Former WSOF lightweight champion Justin Gaethje made quite the impression in his UFC debut. Now, “The Highlight” is aiming to topple the lightweight king, Conor McGregor.
Speaking with TMZ Sports, Gaethje called out the current UFC lightweight champ. Gaethje is confident he’ll secure a fight with the Irishman sooner rather than later and believes he’d destroy McGregor in the Octagon.
“Someone might get lucky and knock me out,” Gaethje said. “But nobody can take what I just did to [Michael Johnson]. Everyone’s going to break before three rounds. That’s a five-round fight. All my fights are going to be five-round fights. You CAN NOT make it through five rounds of that. Conor McGregor cannot make it through five rounds of that. You know, like I said, he has one round, you get one round, knock me out.”
Gaethje is fresh off a “Fight of the Year” bout against No. 5 ranked Michael Johnson. The win will likely propel the undefeated fighter up the rankings, meaning a fight with McGregor isn’t as far-fetched as it sounds. McGregor is of course focused on his superfight with Floyd Mayweather and his return to MMA is uncertain at this point.
“I can beat anybody in this sport,” Gaethje boasted. “No one can take my pressure. You can’t plan for it. You can’t prepare for it. You just have to go in there, and like I said, right away you’re going to go say, ‘oh f***, this guy is trying to kill me’ and then it’s just two guys fighting for their life… Nobody can take those leg kicks for five rounds. Any guy that can make 155 lbs. I am not f****** scared of, I’ll tell you that right now.”
In McGregor’s absence, Gaethje could be in line for an interim title fight with top contender Tony Ferguson. The two have verbally agreed to throw down if UFC gold will be on the line. Either fight would be bonkers for MMA fans as Gaethje is one of, if not the most exciting fighter in the sport today.
Full Fight: WSOFNYC’s Justin Gaethje vs. Luiz Firmino Lightweight Title Fight