Justin Gaethje doesn’t believe UFC 268 will take place at the Madison Square Garden in New York as is currently planned.
Last week, it was announced that a long-talked-about fight between Gaethje and Michael Chandler is set to take place at UFC 268.
Unfortunately, the exciting lightweight match-up already seems to be in jeopardy. New York has recently introduced a new mandate that will require people to prove they are vaccinated against COVID-19 before attending entertainment events.
Chandler is already on the record as saying he will not be vaccinated against the virus before November 6, throwing the potential title eliminator into doubt.
‘The Highlight’ discussed his upcoming fight during the UFC 265 Weigh-In Show. Gaethje believes the recently announced New York mandates will force the pay-per-view event to be relocated.
“I don’t think it’ll be in New York City. I think it’ll be in probably Texas or something, somewhere way sweeter than New York City. New York City sucks. Anywhere outside of that place, and we’ll be good to go.” (Transcribed by MMA Junkie)
Gaethje hasn’t been seen inside the Octagon since October 2020. The 32-year-old fell short in his bid to unify the division against Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 254. Gaethje ended up being choked unconscious in the second round. The loss to Khabib snapped Gaethje’s four-fight winning streak.
Chandler is coming off an unsuccessful title bid of his own. The former Bellator champion fell to a second-round TKO defeat at the hands of Charles Oliveira in the main event of UFC 262. Before that, he made an impressive start to his UFC career by quickly stopping Dan Hooker at UFC 257.
The UFC and Dana White are yet to make any official statement on the status of their planned return to New York.
Do you agree with Justin Gaethje? Will UFC 268 be moved away from New York?