Charles Oliveira

Charles Oliveira to defend lightweight title against Justin Gaethje at UFC 274 in May

UFC lightweight champion Charles Oliveira has his next title defense scheduled. ESPN’s Brett Okamoto reported on Wednesday that according to UFC President Dana White, Oliveira will defend his lightweight title against top-contender Justin Gaethje at UFC 274, which is scheduled to take place on May 7.

The UFC 274 event currently does not have a location, although it had been rumored to take place in Brazil, where Gaethje said he would like to face Oliveira for the title, although it seems those plans will not come to fruition. This will be the second title defense for Charles Oliveira, who most recently defended his title back at UFC 269 in December when he secured a third-round submission victory over Dustin Poirier.

Charles Oliveira won the title back at UFC 262 in May of 2021, when he battled back from early first-round adversity against Michael Chandler, finished the former Bellator lightweight champion, and secured championship gold for the first time in his career. Currently, the champion is riding a 10-fight winning streak with his most recent victories coming against Kevin Lee, Tony Ferguson, Chandler, and Poirier.

The opportunity to fight Chandler for the title became open when former undefeated champion Khabib Nurmagomedov announced his retirement from competition and vacated the belt following his victory over Gaethje at UFC 254.

As noted, this will be the second opportunity for Justin Gaethje to secure lightweight gold in his UFC tenure. His first attempt against Nurmagomedov came up short at UFC 254, but since then he has gone on to put on a Fight Of the Year performance against Michael Chandler at UFC 268 last November, and fully assert himself back into title contention.

With his only three losses coming to two former undisputed champions in Eddie Alvarez and Nurmagomedov, as well as former interim champion Poirier, Justin Gaethje is no stranger to high-pressure situations and big event title fights.

UFC 274 is still awaiting word on where the event will take place, but with the lightweight title fight scheduled, it’s sure to bring a stacked and entertaining fight card.

 

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