Justin Gaethje, Michael Chandler

Justin Gaethje expects title shot after beating Michael Chandler “or we riot”

Former UFC interim lightweight champion Justin Gaethje is ready for another shot at undisputed lightweight gold. Gaethje is set to face former title challenger Michael Chandler at UFC 268 this weekend, and he’s hoping that a win over Chandler will lead him to a title shot, or there will be quite the reaction.

Speaking to the media on UFC 268 fight week, Justin Gaethje says his fight against Chandler should be a title eliminator, and the winner of their fight should face the winner of the lightweight title fight between Dustin Poirier and Charles Oliveira which takes place at UFC 269 in December. If Gaethje goes on to defeat Chandler and doesn’t get the next title fight opportunity after Poirier vs Oliveira, he says there will be a riot. He hasn’t been told a win guarantees him a title shot, but it’s his belief he should get one if victorious.

“That’s my belief. I’m #2 [in the rankings] who else? There’s absolutely nobody else, so yeah, if not, we riot.”

Back in 2018, Poirier defeated Gaethje by TKO in the fourth-round, and now Gaethje says he’d like to exact his revenge against Poirier, but also praised Oliveira and said that he’d be a great matchup as well.

“I hope Poirier because I want to exact my revenge, that’s one of the most human traits is to exact revenge on somebody that has beaten you, especially in this sport. There’s not many times that you get that opportunity. so yeah that would be a great chance. But, Oliveira brings such a crazy style to the cage I think for me that would be a great matchup.”

After his loss to Poirier, Justin Gaethje would go on to cap off four straight wins over James Vick, Edson Barboza, Donald Cerrone, and Tony Ferguson who he defeated to win the interim tile in 2020. Although he was unable to defeated Khabib Nurmagomedov for the undisputed title, Gaethje has his eyes set on a victory over Chandler leading him back to a title fight.

“At the end of the day it’s the only path I have to revenge. He’s beaten Alvarez, so with that one I’d get both of those fights back [Alvarez and Poirier] and I’m okay with that. I will never get the Khabib fight back and I’m okay with that, he’s gone.

Ariel Helwani of MMA Fighting was first to report that the fight between Justin Gaethje and Michael Chandler will open up the PPV card of UFC 268 this Saturday on ESPN+.

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