Henry Cejudo’s prediction that Justin Gaethje will stop Conor McGregor in one round has been questioned by former UFC middleweight and light-heavyweight title challenger Chael Sonnen. Late last month, the reigning flyweight king predicted his Dominance MMA stablemate would wipe the floor with the former two-division champion.
The prediction sparked fierce debate amongst MMA fans, with many wondering if the in-form Gaethje – who has won his last three in a row via first-round stoppage – will be able to stop McGregor inside five minutes.
Cejudo’s insistence that Gaethje would make light work of McGregor prompted Sonnen to analyse each fighter’s respective skill sets.
And upon assessing the pair’s strengths and weaknesses, the 42-year-old predicted the bout will likely turn into a ‘dog fight’.
“Henry Cejudo has come out and he said that Justin Gaethje would get rid of Conor McGregor in one round,” Sonnen said. “Destroy.
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It’s one of those things where it is probably going to be a dog fight
Chael Sonnen on potential fight between Conor McGregor and Justin Gaethje
“I do think you’re left with the question, how does he do that?
“Justin Gaethje is a magnificent wrestler and Conor McGregor has very good wrestling defence.. it’s not bulletproof but it is very good.
“The problem is that Henry only gave him a round so it would have to be something explosive. Ground and pound could be one option.
“It’s one of those things where it is probably going to be a dog fight. Conor prefers a shootout and Gaethje likes a dog fight, he just does.
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“Do you believe that Gaethje is a better striker than Conor and do you believe he is a significantly better striker than Conor? Because according to Henry it’s going to last less than five minutes.
“Is Gaethje fast enough, is he powerful enough, is he accurate enough? This is essentially what you have to ask yourself.”
In late February, it was reported that preliminary talks over a summer showdown between McGregor and Gaethje have taken place.
McGregor, 31, has been on Gaethje’s radar for several months, with the former World Series of Fighting lightweight champion desperately eager to welcome the Irishman back to the Octagon earlier this year.
Gaethje, however, was snubbed in favour of fellow fan favourite Donald Cerrone and wasn’t shy in vocalising his disdain towards the matchup.
His comments didn’t go unnoticed by McGregor, who has added ‘The Highlight’ to his 2020 hit-list.
“He’s on the list. He is on the list,” McGregor said of Gaethje in a recent interview with The Mac Life. “Maybe I will face him next.
“Maybe I’ll face him next, you know? He has it coming to him.
“I mean laugh at how Justin is behaving. He’s a funny guy. He’s been taking it very to heart, you know? And I know the feeling when you do that.
“So maybe I’ll get through Donald and I’ll have a quick turnaround against Justin. So maybe that’s what will happen. But Justin is on the list, no doubt.”
McGregor, 22-4, was last in action in January at UFC 246 in Las Vegas, where he recorded a 40-second victory over Cerrone to pick up his first win in over three years.
The Dubliner is hoping to have a busy 2020, setting his sights on another two outings this year.
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