Justin Gaethje blames pre-fight concussion for lackluster performance against Charles Oliveira

Justin Gaethje blames pre-fight concussion for lackluster performance against Charles Oliveira

Nearly two years removed from his last lightweight title opportunity, Justin Gaethje offered an explanation for his lackluster performance against ‘Do Bronx’ at UFC 274.

Taking a page out of Ronda Rousey’s book, ‘The Highlight’ revealed during a recent appearance on the Pound 4 Pound podcast with Kamaru Usman and Henry Cejudo that he was still suffering the effects of a concussion going into his title fight with Charles Oliveira.

Charles Oliveira submits Justin Gaethje

“I mean, I honestly had, 18 days before [fighting Oliveira], I had got a concussion riding a bike, you know. That’s not something I need to talk about, want to talk about. I said he’s the hardest guy that’s ever punched me but that was a factor, you know… 18 days before I smacked my head off the concrete but I was so ready and so willing, you know.

“The fight was at home and I’ve never pulled out of a fight, and you know I didn’t even think about for a second to pull out of the fight. But that’s why those strikes were so effective, I also got caught up in the moment and that was the last lesson I needed to learn I will never let that happen again I might lose again.”

Justin Gaethje ready to roll through UFC 300 en route to a lightweight title opportunity

Gaethje still hopes to capture the lightweight title one day, but for now, his focus is on keeping the BMF belt he claimed with a brilliant second-round head-kick KO in July.

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Justin Gaethje KOs Poirier

On Saturday, April 13, ‘The Highlight’ will put his bragging rights belt on the line when he meets Dana White’s all-time favorite featherweight, Max Holloway. Dubbed by pundits as “the people’s main event” of UFC 300, Gaethje vs. Holloway has been a massive selling point for fight fans who were left less than impressed with the top of the card.

Justin Gaethje vs. Max Holloway

By all accounts, Gaethje is locked in for a lightweight title opportunity win or lose at UFC 300. However, if ‘Blessed’ pulls off something truly stunning in Sin City, it could knock ‘The Highlight’ back down the queue and pave the way for Holloway’s entry into the top five at 155.

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Justin Gaethje and Max Holloway face off