Justin Gaethje says Khabib Nurmagomedov beats him on paper, but he still plans on winning

Justin Gaethje, Conor McGregor

Justin Gaethje picked up arguably the biggest win of his MMA career on Saturday night when he defeated Donald Cerrone via first-round TKO at UFC Vancouver. Following the fight, the media spoke to Gaethje and asked for his thoughts on a number of topics, including a potential title match against UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov.

The reporters asked Gaethje who would win in a fight between him and Nurmagomedov, and “The Highlight”‘s answer might surprise you.

“He probably beats me if you put it on paper,” Gaethje said. “But I hit so hard, I kick so hard, I’m so athletic. The way you stop a takedown in wrestling is to meet force with force. You don’t try to go away. I won’t touch the cage. If he’s going to take me down, it’s going to be in the middle. But he’s going to get his leg kicked before he even gets a shot off.”

Gaethje said that he wants a title shot against Nurmagomedov, but he admitted that fellow rival Tony Ferguson should get the next crack at the champ before he does.

In the interview, Gaethje also said that he would fight Conor McGregor under the right circumstances, though his goal is to fight for the belt next. He also said he isn’t interested in a rematch against Dustin Poirier, despite Poirier holding a knockout win over him from last year. And finally, Gaethje said that if he does fight Nurmagomedov, he wants to have a full training camp. He said he doesn’t want to fight the champ on short notice, though did say he could be a potential backup for Ferguson if the UFC pays him enough money for it.

How do you think Justin Gaethje would beat Khabib Nurmagomedov if these two meet for the UFC lightweight title?