UFC lightweight contender Justin Gaethje expects a title shot for his next fight if he beats Michael Chandler at UFC 268, and won’t be happy if he gets passed up by the UFC brass.
Gaethje is coming off a title loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov last year at UFC 254, as he fell by second-round submission. He had some early success on the feet but eventually struggled to find answers to Nurmagomedov’s superior ground game.
Gaethje will make his return to the octagon this weekend at UFC 268 against Chandler, another former title challenger who lost to Charles Oliveira for the vacant belt at UFC 262. The fight will be the appetizer for viewers just before the Zhang Weili/Rose Namajunas and Kamaru Usman/Colby Covington title rematches.
Justin Gaethje is laser-focused at another shot at UFC gold
Gaethje wants a title shot next, and if he doesn’t, he’s planning to go off on the UFC and Dana White.
“If I don’t get the shot, we riot,” Gaethje said during his UFC 268 pre-fight presser. “We go to war. I have to be biased when it comes to this. I’m not going to be around here for much longer, so if I were to get snubbed again then, yeah, I’d have to do something about it. Whether that’s causing a ruckus.”
“I have to let my manager do his job,” Gaethje continued. “I got the best manager in the game. We all know what’s supposed to happen if I get this win on Saturday night, so hopefully you all riot with me.”
Before losing to Nurmagomedov, Gaethje earned the interim title by beating Tony Ferguson at UFC 249. He also earned knockout wins over Donald Cerrone, Edson Barboza, and James Vick.
When the Oliveira vs. Chandler fight was set for the vacant title, many felt that Gaethje was robbed of another title opportunity. But with a win this weekend, he could earn another shot at the belt that he’s chased after since signing with the promotion.
Does Justin Gaethje deserve a title shot with a win over Michael Chandler at UFC 268?