‘We All Have a Choice This Is Mine’- Michael Chandler Puts His Fight Against Justin Gaethje in Jeopardy

Published 08/24/2021, 5:30 AM EDT


Ever since MMA was legalized in the state of New York, the promotion has put on a show in the state every year. However, due to the pandemic, the UFC could not put on a show at the Madison Square Garden in 2020. This year, fortunately, the promotion has been given the green light to put on a show at ‘MSG’. 

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Although it is not confirmed at this point in time, reports suggest that Kamaru Usman will defend his welterweight belt against Colby Covington. To add to that, a lightweight fight between Michael Chandler and Justin Gaethje will serve as the co-main event on the night. 

However, it might not be all smooth sailing for the promotion. Recent mandates imposed in the state of New York require proof of vaccination to attend indoor events. As ‘Iron’ has stated that he will not be vaccinated in time for the New York card, the fight against Gaethje might be in jeopardy. 

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In a recent interaction with a fan on Twitter, Chandler further asserted his stance against taking a vaccine. The Tweet said, “Hey champ, but didn’t you say you’d get it if it got FDA approval?.”

Iron’ replied, saying, “No I didn’t. I stated it as a reason…. but not the sole reason.” Chandler continued, “I do not want it. FDA approval or not. Real enough for you? I have no problem with people getting it. We all have a choice… this is mine.”

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Justin Gaethje vs Michael Chandler to be relocated?

Dana White has stated time and time again that he will force none of his employees or fighters to take something they do not want to take. However, if the state does not make an exception for fighters when it comes to being vaccinated, it is almost certain that Chandler vs Gaethje will have to be rescheduled. 

LAS VEGAS, NV – JULY 07: (L-R) Justin Gaethje celebrates after defeating Michael Johnson. In their lightweight bout during The Ultimate Fighter Finale at T-Mobile Arena on July 7, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Brandon Magnus/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Chandler and Gaethje have both stated that they would like to fight in Texas. If UFC 268 is moved to another venue, ‘Iron’ and ‘The Highlight’ will remain on the card. If not, the fight will have to be pushed back to December or early next year. 

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What do you make of the situation? Do you think the fight between Chandler and Gaethje will go ahead at ‘MSG’? Let us know in the comments below!

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Kevin Binoy

1180 articles

Kevin Binoy is an MMA author at EssentiallySports. He earned a Bachelor's degree from Fergusson College and has been covering sports professionally for over two years. Besides working with the MMA writing team, Kevin is a core member of the organization's web stories team and is responsible for delivering engaging MMA web stories.

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