Justin Gaethje targets Charles Oliveira or Dustin Poirier next: ‘I deserve to fight someone in front of me’

LONDON – Justin Gaethje wants a big fight next.

The former UFC interim lightweight champion is eyeing a rematch next following his most recent feat in the octagon. Gaethje (24-4 MMA, 7-4 UFC) defeated Rafael Fiziev by decision in an all-out war in the co-main event of Saturday’s UFC 286. Now, with a win under his belt, Gaethje is looking to fight Charles Oliveira or Dustin Poirier next – two fighters who he previously fought and lost against.

“I did what I had to do,” Gaethje told reporters at the UFC 286 post-fight press conference. “I fought someone below me, and I 100 percent believe that I deserve to fight someone in front of me.

“The loser of the Oliveira-Dariush fight. I rather not fight Dariush, I love that dude. I do believe he’s going to beat Oliveira. I fought like a complete idiot when I fought Oliveira, so I would love to have that fight back, but Dustin (Poirier) is as good of an option.”

Gaethje was 1-2 entering UFC 286, with losses in championship fights against Oliveira and Khabib Nurmagomedov. Now, he wants to make one more run at the title after bouncing back into the win column.

Gaethje and Fiziev pocketed an extra $50,000 for the Fight of the Night award, as their bout met the pre-fight expectations of an intense and exciting fight. Gaethje was pleased with his performance and grateful he and his opponent exited without serious issues.

“I look pretty good, so I did a good job, I did a good job,” Gaethe said regarding his performance. “The key is not to get hit, and I did a good job at that. I took a couple of shots. I say two or three to the head. I asked and prayed that neither of us sustained chronic injury.”

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 286.

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Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie