Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President, Dana White, has gone on record to say that Justin Gaethje would get the next shot at Charles Oliveira’s Lightweight title sometime in 2022. And it would be a well-deserved one at that following his win over Michael Chandler in a “Fight of the Year” contender at UFC 268.
Of course, that was before Conor McGregor decided to chime in to say that he will demand an immediate title shot upon his return to action. Furthermore, after Oliveira defeated Dustin Poirier at UFC 269, “Notorious” was already calling for the fight against “Do Bronx.”
Needless to say, Gaethje wasn’t thrilled one bit.
“I’d burn it all down,” Gaethje told TMZ when asked how he’d feel if the promotion opted to give McGregor the title fight over him (via MMA Fighting), before taking a shot at McGregor’s decline over the years.
“F—king burn it down, that’s what I’d do. [Conor] is so irrelevant. He has not won a fight since 2016 in the Lightweight division. I’m ranked No. 1. [in UFC]. I saw they updated the rankings, I’m No. 1 now, that feels pretty good.
“My whole life I’ve been working toward this,” he continued. “That’s what’s next. If not, I f*cking burn it down. It doesn’t matter. I’ll show up and start throwing dollies everywhere. I don’t know what the answer is.”
Of course, timing is everything and McGregor is still not 100 percent recovered after he broke his leg in his trilogy fight against Poirier. In fact, the former UFC “champ-champ” says he likely won’t be able to spar until April, which means a return to action isn’t likely until possibly summer of 2022.
By then, Oliveira and Gaethje would have more than likely already taken part in their championship fight. If that happens and Gaethje proves superior that night, “Highlight” won’t be too quick to give McGregor first shot until he proves himself with a win or two.
“I would absolutely not allow him to fight for the title if he did not win and go through the process,” Gaethje said. “He’s not going to sh-t on everything. There’s too many [guys], Beneil Dariush, Islam Makhachev, those are the guys that I would fight, not Conor McGregor. That’s not how this works.
“He’s becoming more and more irrelevant as time goes on,” Gaethje concluded. “Pretty soon you won’t even be asking me these questions. It’s going to be a beautiful f—king day.”
There was a time when Gaethje was eager to put his hands on the Irishman, but after McGregor lost three of his last four bouts, it seems Gaethje’s interest in that fight has declined, as well.