Khabib Nurmagomedov is the current UFC Lightweight Champion and Gaethje believes he’ll provide the toughest challenge for the champ.
“When the time comes, it’s kill or be killed,” Gaethje said on the UFC Fight Night Philadelphia post-fight show (via Shaun Al-Shatti of MMA Fighting). “That means you or me. I don’t care who it is. It could be you (Felder), it could be Nate (Diaz), it could be Donald (Cerrone), it could be Khabib (Nurmagomedov). I don’t care. I’m on my way to Khabib and I want to fight him. I think I’m the toughest matchup for him.”
Nurmagomedov is currently in the midst of serving a suspension for his role in the UFC 229 post-fight brawl, but is expected to return to action later this year.
Paul Felder also threw his name in the hat to face Gaethje, but Gaethje issued a stern warning to the lightweight competitor.
“You don’t want that to happen to you,” says Gaethje.
Gaethje could have a bit of a wait before getting at Nurmagomedov, as UFC Featherweight Champion Max Holloway is facing Dustin Poirier for the vacant UFC Interim Lightweight Title at UFC 236, with the winner most likely facing Nurmagomedov later this year.