Justin Gaethje is one of the most exciting fighters in the UFC’s history. His tendency to have absolute wars against his opponents means fans always eagerly anticipate all of Gaethje’s fights. And now, Rafael Fiziev will go toe-to-toe against ‘The Highlight’ at UFC 286.
Fiziev will want to avoid trading punches with the former interim champion. However, Fiziev, like all of Gaethje’s opponents, needs to be careful of the leg kicks employed by the American lightweight. And on the recent episode of UFC Embedded, fans saw exactly why Gaethje’s leg kicks are feared by every UFC lightweight.
Former UFC double champion, Daniel Cormier found out the hard way exactly how lethal Gaethje’s kicks are. DC was interviewing Gaethje, but as soon as it wrapped up, the two started playfighting. However, Justin got a little carried away and landed a leg kick on DC who immediately grimaced and yelled in pain.
Cormier spent a good minute rubbing his leg before the pain subsided. The UFC 286 co-main eventer even recounted the time when he kicked Luke Rockhold in the leg. He said the former UFC middleweight had to buy a new phone because of the damage caused by Gaethje. It seems Fiziev will need to be careful during his fight with Gaethje lest he should lose a leg.
Justin Gaethje compared his leg kicks to Rafael Fiziev’s during the UFC 286 media day
“The Highlight” is a fighter who only takes on the very best opponents. Over the last 3 years, he only fought opponents that were ranked inside the UFC’s lightweight top 10. And UFC 286 is no different as he takes on #6 ranked lightweight up-and-comer, Rafael Fiziev.
During the UFC 286 media day, Justin gave his opponent his due credit and called him an “elite” fighter. He gave Fiziev props for his striking ability and recent performances. However, he also revealed one area in which Fiziev could not compare to him.
During the scrum, a media member asked the former NCAA Division I wrestler about how Fiziev’s leg kicks compared to his own. He said, “Uhhh, they’re faster but not quite as heavy [as mine]. So, we’ll see how it works.” It seems Gaethje has studied his opponent quite a bit.
Rafael Fiziev’s leg kicks are quite fast, and they are also quite powerful. However, Gaethje’s assessment isn’t wrong because not many people have leg kicks as heavy as his. Khabib Nurmagomedov once compared getting hit by Justin to getting hit by a truck. So naturally, Fiziev’s leg kicks don’t compare to Justin’s. However, UFC 286 will finally answer the question of whose kicks are more effective as the two lightweights lock horns.
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