UFC lightweight contender Justin Gaethje has rejected the idea of a fight against divisional rival Dan Hooker after the Kiwi star called him out.
Gaethje (21-2) is coming off the back of a big win over Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone last month which served as his third straight first round knockout, bringing his UFC record to 4-2. Hooker (19-8), on the other hand, was able to dispatch of Al Iaquinta at UFC 243 with a comprehensive unanimous decision win.
The New Zealander clearly feels like he should be awarded a higher ranked opponent, with Dustin Poirier and Justin Gaethje being the two names at the top of his hit list.
Alas, during a recent interview with MMAJunkie during the Dominance MMA media day, Justin made it clear that he’s shooting much higher than that.
“It doesn’t make sense at all. Business-wise, it makes absolutely zero sense. He just got his ass beat by Edson Barboza, so, for him to cross over that name and mention my name or Dustin Poirier’s name was kind of a b**** move.”
“I shouldn’t knock him for it, because it’s what he should be doing [calling him out]. It was a great win, great win, great performance, good for him. You know, if he keeps winning, then we’ll fight.”
Gaethje is known for being a human highlight reel in the world of mixed martial arts, but his game seems to have evolved to the point where a showdown with Khabib Nurmagomedov seems like a legitimate possibility.
As noted by Justin, Hooker’s loss to Edson Barboza not so long ago left a lot of fans wondering whether or not he still has what it takes to be a top-level talent in this absolutely stacked division.
With two back to back wins over high-level opponents, though, Dan’s case certainly isn’t the weakest.
Who would you like to see Dan Hooker fight next?