Over the years, UFC fans have witnessed some of the finest legends of the sport inside the octagon. Right from retro-legends like Chuck Liddell to modern-day heroes like Khabib Nurmagomedov, Daniel Cormier, and more. In a conversation with Helen Yee, the current UFC lightweight sensation, Justin Gaethje expressed his notions on this highly debatable topic.
Gaethje confessed, “You know I don’t, it’s such a hard decision if you’re going to have a discussion I think you’d have to do it by era because the era is so different the style of fighting is so different, you know from 92 to 2002. And then, so forth you know and so on and so I don’t know. You know, Royce Gracie, obviously, is a first-generation goat.”
According to ‘The Highlight’, MMA had generation-wise legends who ruled the sport. He feels the UFC Hall of Famer, Royce Gracie predominantly ruled the 90s era. Fans consider the Brazilian Mixed Martial Artist as one of the most influential personalities of the sport. He made his UFC debut in 1993 and won 11 fights in a row.
Furthermore, Gaethje name-dropped Matt Hughes and Georges St-Pierre. He perceived that the sport has changed over the years and it’s unjust to compare any of these legends with each other. However, he acknowledged Georges St-Pierre as an elite king of MMA, who made everyone fell in love with the sport.
He concluded, “Matt Hughes, GSP all those guys that really freaking made us fall in love with the sport, you know, at the very beginning in 2002, in 2003, 2004. There’s a lot of guys. And again, you can’t really compare the two. You know to today’s fighters because the sport is so different. But um, you know I’d say GSP on merit alone.”
Can Justin Gaethje go down as a GOAT of the sport?
Gaethje named a set of UFC fighters that inspired him to take up this sport. But the big question popping up among UFC fans is, can ‘The Highlight’ hang his gloves as an ultimate legend of modern-day-MMA?
Tony Ferguson is a special athlete. ‘El Cucuy’ is an extremely unorthodox fighter that makes…
Gaethje took the fight universe by storm after he defeated UFC’s all-time stalwart, Tony Ferguson, at UFC 249. Many considered it to be one of the biggest upsets in UFC history. Gaethje put an end to Ferguson’s 12 fight win streak and bagged the interim lightweight title that night.
‘The Highlight’ even challenged the current lightweight champion, Khabib Nurmagomedov, post his astonishing win over Ferguson. Though Gaethje lost his battle against Khabib, he became only the second fighter to win a round against ‘The Eagle’.
Gaethje is the number 1 ranked lightweight in the UFC with one of the strongest resumes in the sport. He possesses a 22-3 MMA record. He has won 5 out of his 8 fights in the UFC. He has a huge career left in front of him and with his tremendous skill sets and persona, ‘The Highlight’ unquestionably can go down as an icon of the sport.
Do you think 2021 will be a year for accolades for Gaethje? Would you envision him retiring as a legend of the game?
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