Justin Gaethje will challenge Islam Makhachev for the lightweight title if the Dagestani emerges victorious in his upcoming fight against Charles Oliveira at UFC 294.
Gaethje most recently won the BMF title by knocking out Dustin Poirier in the second round at UFC 291, solidifying his place as the division’s top contender, who will likely face the winner of the lightweight title fight between Makhachev and Oliveira at UFC 294.
Should Makhachev beat Oliveira, Gaethje will be the next in line for a title shot, according to his manager, Ali Abdelaziz.
“If Islam wins, he will fight Justin Gaethje next,” Abdelaziz said during a recent interview with The Schmo. “This is what we want, this is what the UFC wants. Justin Gaethje earned it, too. You don’t go out there and knock out Dustin Poirier like that and don’t get a title shot. I think Justin made a statement and he earned his spot. Islam is the best lightweight in the world, hands down. There’s no question. I think he’s the pound-for-pound greatest fighter we have today.”
In a recent interview, Makhachev revealed that should he defeat Oliveira, he’d like to face the winner of the upcoming welterweight title fight between Leon Edwards and Colby Covington at UFC 296.
Both Makhachev and Covington have been calling each other out for the past few weeks so if all goes well for them, Gaethje might have to wait a little longer for his title shot.
Justin Gaethje or Colby Covington, who should Islam Makhachev fight if he beats Charles Oliveira at UFC 294?