Gaethje has had his eyes on Makhachev for a while, but things have really heated up between the two, after Daniel Cormier suggested that Makhachev should jump the line for the next title shot, over the winner of Gaethje’s UFC 269 war with Michael Chandler. This has since developed into a back and forth with the Khabib protégé, as well as the former champ himself.
Gaethje is convinced at the point, that he has done enough to earn the title shot, lest the UFC does something that he would consider to be unethical. However, speaking with MMAFighting, he made it clear that he knows that there is a solid chance of him fighting Makhachev someday, sending a warning to the lightweight prospect.
“I’ll let him go first if he gets his spot. I’ll beat one of these guys (Poirier or Oliveira) and then I’ll let him go first. Fuck yeah, I’m looking forward to that. War’s coming. He wants to know one thing, fucking war is coming, so bring it,” Gaethje said.
By all accounts, it seems likely that the UFC will book Justin Gaethje against the winner of next month’s lightweight title fight between Charles Oliveira and Dustin Poirier, especially given how exciting his fight with Chandler was. Knocking at the door just behind him, though, is most likely Islam Makhachev, so it is nice to see that Gaethje is not intimidated by the mystique surrounding the highly touted prospect.
Watch the full interview with Justin Gaethje in the video below: