James Vick has been relentlessly blasting Justin Gaethje’s and his approach to fighting leading up to UFC Fight Night 135, and the former WSOF champ really wants to make the lightweight eat his words, Saturday night.
At a recent press conference to promote the UFC’s upcoming main events, Vick made headlines, after he called Gaethje the “Homer Simpson” of MMA. Vick pointed to how many significant strikes Gaethje takes in his fights, and since then, the surging fighter has stood by those comments.
Well, recently MMA Fighting spoke with Gaethje, and the accomplished fighter had plenty to say about Vick’s verbal attacks. Here is just some of what “The Highlight” had to say:
“He just doesn’t get it. He doesn’t get it,” Gaethje said. “I don’t know, man. I don’t know, I don’t really care. I just can’t wait to put him to sleep, really, honestly. I don’t know. I don’t know why he’d say his volume is higher than mine, I don’t know why he’d say that he’s more athletic than me. I don’t know why he thinks he deserves the opportunities that I’ve gotten. He doesn’t understand how I’ve earned what I’ve gotten, how I earned three top-five opponents, how I earned three out of four main events, how I earned four Fight Night bonuses. He doesn’t understand. He feels entitled for some odd reason.
“He’s only fought one top-15 guy — he went to sleep. There’s a huge difference in the way we both went to sleep. He’s the definition of someone who’s not a fighter. How do you get knocked out laying on your back for three minutes when you don’t even go all the way to sleep? You know you’ve got fans and family out there worried about you — get up on your feet and find the stool. Small things like that, I just don’t think he understands what we’re doing here.”
Vick has long been arguing that he hasn’t received the promotional push that he deserves. After all, the 31 year-old has gone 9-1 to date in the Octagon. That’s pretty impressive. But, as Gaethje alluded to, Vick hasn’t fought a lot of top tier, contenders during that run. Most recently, he defeated Francisco Trinaldo, who is currently ranked #15 at 155. He also holds a stoppage win over Joe Duffy. The man who slept Vick in the Octagon was Beneil Dariush.
One thing’s for certain, if Vick goes out and defeated Gaethje, then he could be one win away from fighting for the title. Getting by one of the toughest fighters in the game, however, probably won’t be too easy. Just ask Michael Johnson.
UFC FN 135 will take place in Lincoln, Nebraska.