Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) was trying to book a lightweight showdown between Justin Gaethje and Anthony Pettis as early as last fall, but the bout never materialized and both fighters moved on to bigger and better things.
But that hasn’t stopped Pettis from keeping the conversation alive. In fact, the recently-victorious “Showtime” told the mixed martial arts (MMA) media that he’s willing to make his return to lightweight to star in “The Highlight” reel.
The feeling does not appear to be mutual.
“As much as I respect Pettis, I won’t be looking for that fight after I win here,” Gaethje told MMA Junkie. “I want that fight back (with Dustin Poirier). I have to have that fight back. Ultimately, I would like to see (Poirier) win and get the title, and then fight him.”
That might prove to be a tough sell.
Poirier finished Gaethje at the UFC on FOX 29 event roughly one year back, then put away Eddie Alvarez to earn a crack at the interim lightweight title at UFC 236. Win or lose, he’s still likely to remain higher up on the 155-pound food chain.
Gaethje also has to defeat Edson Barboza in the UFC on ESPN 2 main event tomorrow night in Philadelphia before he starts planning any future title fights. For much more on that five-round showdown in “The City of Brotherly Love” click here.