Daniel Cormier makes Charles Oliveira the favourite against Justin Gaethje

  • Tom Ward
Daniel Cormier makes Charles Oliveira the favourite against Justin Gaethje

Charles Oliveira ‘has to be considered’ the favourite against Justin Gaethje, according to Daniel Cormier.

The Brazilian, 31, made a successful first defence of his lightweight title by submitting Dustin Poirier in the main event of UFC 269 last weekend.

And now UFC president Dana White has all but confirmed Gaethje will get the next shot at ‘Do Bronx’ as ‘long as everybody is healthy’. 

Gaethje, 33, is excited by the opportunity, as he was quoted as saying ‘I can’t wait to break his face’.

After the fight, he said: “I absolutely loved it. I will give no disrespect to Charles. He is now the undisputed champion, and I cannot wait to fight him. 

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“I saw a competitor tonight. I saw a dog, and I can’t wait to break his face.

“He gets hit a lot, and he better pray and hope for next however many days until our fight that he takes me down and gets his choke. Because if not, we’ll see what happens.”

But former light and heavyweight champ Cormier doesn’t think it will be such an easy night for ‘The Highlight’.

“Justin Gaethje presents a lot of problems for him because he’s as tough and durable,” Cormier told ESPN.

“But the reality is, Dustin Poirier, Justin Gaethje [have] a lot of similarities.

Charles Oliveira submitted Dustin Poirier in the second round

“Those guys went to war with each other very recently, so I don’t think we’re gonna [sic] be seeing Charles Oliveira as the underdog anymore.

“Against Justin Gaethje, Charles has to be considered the favourite after all that he’s done.”

Of course, anything can happen between now and then, but as it stands right now, Cormier would find it hard to bet against Oliveira. 

Having said that however, he did suggest he needs to tighten up his defence, as he pointed to the fact that ‘he does absorb a lot of damage’. 

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“I just don’t know who’s favoured to beat him anymore,” he added.

“I’m dead serious. Like, after watching him doing what he did, I don’t know. For as good as he looked, I don’t know how you choose against him.

“Now the one thing that could be a danger is that he does absorb a lot of damage. That’s why he was hurt against Chandler, and he was hurt against Dustin.

“I don’t know if you can take that damage early against a Justin Gaethje and live to talk about it.”

READ MORE: Charles Oliveira favours a fight with Conor McGregor over Justin Gaethje

MORE: Amanda Nunes ‘quit’ after taking a ‘mental beating’ from Julianna Pena, Chael Sonnen says

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