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Justin Gaethje headed for surgery before ‘one last run toward UFC title’

UFC 274: Oliveira v Gaethje Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Justin Gaethje is taking himself out of action.

The perennial lightweight title contender has been patiently waiting for an opponent to break his nose in order to facilitate a surgery that would correct an existing condition; however, “The Highlight” is now on year 13 without a busted beak.

“I’m going to get nose surgery July 14,” Gaethje told MMA Junkie. “Take a good month to recover, and get back to work. I think end of the year, most likely early next year. I’ve been waiting for 13 years for someone in MMA to break my nose and it hasn’t happened. I broke it in wrestling practice 13 years ago, and life’s been hell since then. I have to wear a nose drip tonight, every night to bed every single night. Eating, sleeping, living, training, fighting. I’m not sure. I don’t even know what my fucking voice sounds like. I’ve been waiting a long time to get this broken. No one has done it, so I’m going to do it myself and give it one last run toward the title.”

Gaethje is 0-2 in lightweight title fights, falling to Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 254 before going down in flames against Charles Oliveira at UFC 274. The former NCAA Division I All-American has five knockouts in UFC and 10 post-fight performance bonuses.

“The Highlight” turns 34 in November.