UFC 268: Justin Gaethje vs. Michael Chandler: Prediction and Analysis

Published 11/03/2021, 12:22 AM EDT
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)


One of the most exciting and highly anticipated fights at UFC 268 is Justin Gaethje vs. Michael Chandler. It is the fight that the championship bouts will follow. Given the names involved, many expect it to be the most thrilling fight of the night.

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Gaethje and Chandler are two of the most entertaining and explosive fighters in the UFC. Both men like to dish it out, and always put on a show for the fans. ‘The Highlight’ is coming off a loss against Khabib Nurmagomedov in his last fight. He was on a four-fight win streak before that and beat Tony Ferguson, who was on a 12 fight win streak to win the interim UFC lightweight belt.

He is a former NCAA Division 1 Wrestler but is mainly known for his striking. Gaethje has 19 wins via T/KO in his MMA career.

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Michael Chandler is a former Bellator lightweight champion. He made his highly anticipated UFC debut at UFC 257 against Dan Hooker and secured a first-round stoppage.

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The win immediately earned him a title shot at UFC 262. ‘Iron’ faced Charles Oliveira for the interim title in May. After starting out the fight strong and landing some big shots, Oliveira caught him with a left hook which ultimately led to the stoppage in the second round.

As they both suffered defeats in title fights, they will look to clinch a win at Madison Square Garden to stay in the reckoning at 155.

UFC 268: Justin Gaethje vs. Michael Chandler

As both fighters have a very similar fighting style, it will make for an exciting fight.

Gaethje has landed 59 percent of his significant strikes with 87 percent of them landing whilst on the feet. He also has an excellent takedown defense, having stuffed 80 percent of the takedown attempts of his opponents.

His only submission loss has come against Khabib Nurmagomedov. Even though he hasn’t fought in more than a year, ‘The Highlight’ seems to be the one who is more durable.

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Michael Chandler is one of the most explosive fighters in the world. He is a former three-time Bellator lightweight champion and likes to go after his opponents early.

Iron‘ is also a former NCAA Division 1 Wrestler and an excellent striker. He has won 10 of his fights via knockout and seven by submission. One interesting thing about Chandler’s career is that he has never lost a non-title fight. However, Gaethje just looks like a fighter who is slightly better than his opponent and has more to offer.

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Prediction: Justin Gaethje to win by TKO in the third round

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Arunaditya Aima

255 articles

Arunaditya is a UFC writer at EssentiallySports. Having completed his Post Graduate Diploma in Multimedia Journalism from IIJNM, Arunaditya aspires to be an important voice in the world of MMA and interview the likes of Jon Jones, Conor McGregor, Amanda Nunes, and other such superstars of the sport. He has followed the sport for over a decade and is an ardent fan of Georges St-Pierre, who he believes is the greatest of all time.

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