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Its All About defending the BMF Title at UFC 300 and Eyeing Future Championship Opportunities for Justin Gaethje

Justin Gaethje

Black Belt Plus

Justin Gaethje's essence as a fighter shines brightly across the UFC landscape. Known for his straightforward approach and electrifying performances, he is often hailed as the fighter's favorite. Although well-positioned to challenge Islam Makhachev for the undisputed lightweight championship, Justin Gaethje chooses to defend his BMF title against Max Holloway at UFC 300 instead.

Timing influenced Gaethje's decision to pursue what appears a high-risk, low-reward bout in the context of championship goals. He was poised to face the winner of a planned rematch between Makhachev and Oliveira. However, Oliveira's withdrawal due to injury disrupted those plans. Gaethje, who consistently fought at least twice annually throughout his career, except in 2021 and 2022, embraced the unexpected turn of events.

"For me, life is about rolling with the punches, taking things a quarter-mile at a time," Gaethje shared with "I thrive on the unpredictability of this sport and the life I'm fortunate to lead."

Since his UFC debut in July 2017, Gaethje has consistently faced top contenders in the lightweight division, earning a record 12 Performance Bonuses in as many bouts. In Holloway, he meets a formidable opponent who holds records for the most strikes in a round, a fight, and overall in his career. Holloway's resilience—he's never been knocked down by a strike in his 28 UFC fights—only adds to the allure of this matchup as a significant test and a potential legacy-definer for Gaethje.

"Holloway was a figure I looked up to when I aspired to join the UFC," Gaethje remarked. "Fighting him not only honors my journey but is genuinely exhilarating."

The bout promises intense action, reflecting both fighters' renowned stamina, resilience, and aggressive styles. While others like Alexander Volkanovski and Dustin Poirier have managed to outperform Holloway, Gaethje's signature leg kicks and potent striking pose a distinct challenge.

Strategically, Gaethje leaves much to his coach, Trevor Wittman, focusing instead on maintaining a focused, emotion-free mindset that enhances his performance. "Nothing beats the thrill of competing under these lights," he stated confidently. "I'm here to show up and show out."

While a victory against Holloway won't guarantee a title shot immediately, it ensures Gaethje remains a pivotal figure in a critical period for the lightweight division, set into motion at UFC 299. As contenders vie for prominence, Gaethje is determined to distinguish himself among his peers.

As UFC 300 approaches, Gaethje is energised by the prospect of battling amidst the uncertainties that define both the event and his career. On April 13, as he steps into the octagon, Gaethje is prepared to gamble everything for glory, embodying the true spirit of a fighter. After all, risking it all is what being a BMF is all about.

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