The UFC 268 PPV main card started off with a bang as Justin Gaethje and Michael Chandler put on not only a Fight of the Year candidate, but it was one of the greatest fights of all time. The fight went back and forth in the best ways, with both men landing blows that would have taken out mere mortals. At the end of the day, it was Gaethje who got his hands raised, and should be the rightful next in line for a shot at the UFC’s lightweight belt.
Gaethje opened the fight with low calf kicks, while Chandler was looking to bomb in the pocket. A couple of Chandler’s heaters got through, making Gaethje backpedal. It wasn’t long before Gaethje was firing back. Chandler was attacking the leg, too, but his weren’t dramatic as Justin’s. Then the brawl broke out! Both men swung from the hip, and both men were connecting and hurting the other man. Chandler started to shoot takedowns, but Gaethje wasn’t having it. WHAT A ROUND!
Gaethje returned to the leg kick early in the second stanza. Chandler started to pump his jab to set up his right hand, while Gaethje was working his own right hand with his kicks. Then Gaethje blasted Chandler with a sick uppercut that sat him down. Justin jumped on him with ground strikes, but Chandler was able to recover. Gaethje allowed Michael to stand back up, and the war continued. Chandler wasn’t able to get his takedowns and his leg was getting chewed up. At the end of the round, Gaethje was poked in the eye, and as the ref called time out, Chandler landed a clean and unblocked punch. The fight resumed and the round ended.
The third round started with Gaethje connecting with his punches as Chandler closed the distance. Chandler was still launching haymakers, and began attacking the body. Gaethje responded with another damaging leg kick. Chandler then shot in for a lifting takedown, but Gaethje used the momentum to get on top. CRAZY! The fight returned to open space and Chandler started to egg on Justin and unleashed a couple of flurries. Gaethje then scored several hard right hands, dinking up Chandler, who was just eating them. WHAT A FIGHT!