Justin Gaethje has one thought on his mind: title shot. The fan favorite UFC lightweight title contender wants his next fight to be either for the belt or a title eliminator bout. He has even offered to be the back-up for Khabib vs. Ferguson at UFC 249 (a role which will be filled by Conor McGregor, according to the UFC).
Gaethje was clear to point out that he is, indeed, one of us: “I really, really want that fight to happen,” adding that he doesn’t “wish anything (bad)” to happen to either fighter.
Since coming into the UFC, Gaethje has been heralded as the promotion’s most exciting fighter. But after six fights (in which he earned seven post-fight bonuses), and three consecutive first round knockouts, “The Highlight” is seeking out bigger fights, much to the ire of UFC president Dana White.
White recently told ESPN, “We’ve offered Gaethje a lot of fights that Gaethje hasn’t taken.” Gaethje offered a bit more context, saying that he accepted some of the offers and had conditions for others.
Nonetheless, it seems Gaethje is trying to leverage the UFC into booking him a bigger fight, which the UFC never takes kindly to. It remains to be seen how successful Mr. Gaethje can be in this approach.