After taking the time to ponder who and what Dana White was referring to when he stated he has been turning down fights, Justin Gaethje has come up with some answers as well as a response to the UFC President’s accusations.
Despite the fact that Conor McGregor and Justin Gaethje were both available and right next to one another in the rankings, the UFC decided to go with Conor McGregor vs. Donald Cerrone in an unofficial, one-sided #1 contender fight in the direction of Conor McGregor instead of a McGregor/Gaethje pairing. What’s more, even though the fight is taking place at 170 lbs, McGregor would leapfrog Justin Gaethje for a lightweight title shot if he gets past Cerrone.
Dana White explained this by obtusely stating that Justin Gaethje “knows what’s going on.” More recently, Dana White became more specific, stating that Gaethje has been turning down fights. After catching wind of Dana White’s remarks and racking his brain, Gaethje has drawn a conclusion for what White is referring to.
“I’ve been trying to figure out what he’s talking about,” Gaethje said on a recent appearance on MMA Tonight. “I know when he did that interview not too long ago when he kept saying, ‘Justin Gaethje knows what’s going on, he knows what’s happening,” I literally had no idea what he was talking about. So it was pretty crazy.
“But I was just thinking about it with my dad, talking about it with my dad, and I’m pretty sure it was…they offered me Tony Ferguson when Tony Ferguson fought Cowboy in June. And they were looking for a replacement for that fight in May, in the beginning of May. And I told them that wasn’t enough time, but if they pushed it back a little bit farther, I would take that fight.
“Then, they asked if I wanted to fight Tony on the Abu Dhabi card, and I said yes, and (Ferguson) said no,” Gaethje continued. And so I took the Cowboy fight just after that. And then just recently, I believe he offered me Charles Oliveira in Brazil or Dan Hooker in New Zealand all while the champion did not have a fight and McGregor was coming back and still looking for a fight. As far as I know, that’s what the deal is. I don’t know.”
Justin Gaethje would then theorize that Dana White’s decision to make the McGregor/Cerrone fight is a result of White answering to powers that be even higher than himself. He believes that White is not intentionally trying to damage Gaethje’s name or lob personal attacks against him but is simply following orders to put McGregor in a position to rematch Khabib Nurmagomedov as soon as possible.
Justin Gaethje still has no opponent lined up and is relegated to watching both UFC 246 and UFC 249 from the sidelines at the moment. In his most recent bout, he knocked out Donald Cerrone in the first round at UFC Vancouver, only to watch Donald Cerrone go on to headline UFC 246 opposite Conor McGregor in a little over two weeks from now.
What are your thoughts on Justin Gaethje’s response to Dana White’s accusations?