Photo by Reuters / Kyle Terada
- Justin Gaethje just destroyed Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone in a single round on Saturday.
- The 30-year-old striker then said on a post-event ESPN show that he would welcome a fight against Conor McGregor, if the Irishman was available.
- Gaethje said that McGregor "punched an old man in the face, I want to f— him up for that."
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Justin Gaethje just destroyed Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone in a single round at a UFC Fight Night event in Canada.
The 30-year-old striker then dismissed a bout against Conor McGregor when he was giving his post-victory speech in the Octagon, but when he was told the Irishman had tweeted and could be available for a comeback fight, Gaethje said he would love to "f— him up."
Gaethje floored Cerrone in the first round of their September 14 showdown, and pummeled him with further blows while inviting the referee to stop the fight.
The referee eventually intervened, awarding Gaethje his third successive knockout win.
Speaking to Dan Cormier in the Octagon after his latest win, Gaethje said: "Every time I walk out here, I question everything on purpose. I think they’re better than me. I think they’re working harder than me. I have something to prove to myself every time I step in here, and I’ll never let myself down. Max effort is all I expect from myself."
When asked if McGregor was now in his crosshairs, Gaethje said: "The Irishman is retired, I want a real fighter, I want the winner of Tony [Ferguson] and Khabib [Nurmagomedov]. I want to fight Khabib before he’s gone. And if Tony wins, nobody’s going to miss that fight."
However, Gaethje changed his mind when ESPN told him about McGregor’s tweet.
This is the tweet:
"He looks tough. He looks really tough right there," Gaethje said. "If he’s going to fight, I definitely want to fight him. He punched an old man in the face, I want to f— him up for that."
Gaethje is referring to an incident earlier in the year when McGregor was seen on video throwing a punch at an older man in a Dublin pub.
TMZ released footage later, forcing McGregor to issue a grovelling apology on ESPN.
In the same interview with ESPN, McGregor said he was willing to fight many lightweights upon his return — an indication that he had finally realized the division had moved on without him, with his rivals even calling him "irrelevant."
- Khabib Nurmagomedov’s manager says the Russian won’t be fighting ‘irrelevant’ Conor McGregor again because he’s ‘already whooped his ass’
- Dustin Poirier says a rematch with Conor McGregor ‘makes a lot of sense at this point’
- Khabib Nurmagomedov wants to host a $50 million charity fight in Africa, and it could be a rematch with Conor McGregor
firstname.lastname@example.org (Alan Dawson)