Justin Gaethje is preparing for a championship shot, and the UFC star believes he has what it takes to dethrone champ Islam Makhachev. At the same time, he knows he needs to earn the fight, and he's willing to run through Dustin Poirier to do so.
"I think that's the obvious choice, Dustin. He's sitting at number 2 right now, I gave the new guys a chance and I proved that I am elite, and I need to fight elite fighters to fight for a belt. I think Dustin's the obvious choice. I think the loser of Dariush and Oliveira is also an option, but outside of those two, I do not see an option,” Justin Gaethje told TMZ.
Irrespective of what happens when he fights Dustin Poirier, Gaethje is confident that he can take out Islam Makhachev.
"I think [Islam is] a hard fight for anybody. Just create damage. I'd have to fight the perfect fight. I think I can knock him out. I think I can knock anybody out with the power that I possess,” he added.
He also talked about the similarities between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Islam Makhachev.
"I think they're very similar. I think the biggest difference is Islam has been finished. He's lost a fight. He's been finished. So that aura of invincibility is there, but it's not based on 100% facts like Khabib has, I think that's the biggest factor, the biggest difference,” he added.
Justin Gaethje on retirement
Speaking further in the interview, Gaethje added that he has not thought about the idea of retirement.
"I have never thought about retirement. I haven't thought about my life after retirement. I'm still working for the goal that I've set for myself. 34, I think we are at our peak, mentally, physically. Between 34 and 36, so I can't see myself being done in the next two years. I'd say two to four years is def a timeline that makes sense. I'm not trying to fight when I'm 40, and after 36, I don't see myself getting better,” he added.
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