UFC on Fox 29 was headlined by a fight of the year contender when Dustin Poirier faced off against Justin Gaethje. This bout did not disappoint as both fighters put everything on the line in an attempt to come out on top. Poirier prevailed after finishing Gaethje in the 4th round, but Poirier believes that Gaethje needs to use more of his tools if he wants to have more success in the UFC.
On The MMA Hour, Justin Poirier spoke about his tough bout with Gaethje, and he also commented on Gaethje’s fighting style.
“It was as I expected,” Poirier said on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour. “Maybe a little tougher. I hit him big shots and he just kept coming forward. He took some serious shots in that fight man and kept it together for most part. The dude’s a warrior. We knew that going into it”
There has been much talk about Gaethje’s approach to fights. He is known for his warrior-like style, always willing to trade shots with the best fighters in the world, but Poirier believes that it is not too late for Gaethje to make changes to his fighting style.
“You just need to have a different mindset,” Poirier said. “You need a bit of that for sure. You have to be tough. All these guys are tough. But at some point, you have to outsmart and outthink and out plan these top fighters. You can’t just go in and say, ‘I’m going to be tougher that you,’ you know? Heavy bags are tough, but I’ve never been beat by one.”
Justin Gaethje was an All-American wrestler at the University of Northern Colorado, but he never attempts to use his wrestling pedigree when he is competing in mixed martial arts.
“Unless you’re committed to fighting the four or five fights that you said you want to retire after, you’re going to take too much damage,” Poirier said. “You have a lot of skill that you’re not showing. And I think you should. He’s an All-America wrestler and I’m sure he has some jiu-jitsu. He wants to entertain the fans.”
It’s unclear whether Justin Gaethje will continue to fight in the same way, but the recent wars that Justin Gaethje has been involved in raise huge concerns about his health. Brain damage within mixed martial arts is a real concern, and the more wars that Gaethje is involved in, the more chance he has of suffering from Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE).
Should Justin Gaethje change his fighting style to save his MMA career?