Up-and-coming lightweight Justin Gaethje was anticipating the toughest challenge of his young career when he stepped up to face former UFC fighter Drew Fickett recently at Rage in the Cage 163.
What Gaethje got was his fastest victory yet, knocking Fickett out just 12 seconds into the bout.
“I was ready for the best Drew Fickett,” said Gaethje. “I thought he was going to try to take me down to the ground right away, but I had a really good warm-up with my coaches and I felt like I was going to knock him out.
“I did like a three-punch combo – an uppercut, a left hook and then a right hook – and then I got in like two punches on the ground. He was out for like five minutes, and it was kind of scary. I was really scared for him, so I’m glad to find out that he’s okay.”
For Gaethje, the knockout victory is another step forward in his evolving game.
“That was my first standing knockout on my feet and it feels great,” he said. “Every punch I throw, I throw it as hard as I can, and it’s something I kind of need to work on. My coach sees me spar every day and it’s just too hard for me, I can’t help it, I like to throw bombs in there.
“My game is evolving and getting better every day. I think I work with some of the best guys in the business. With what the coaches are shaping me in to be, it’s going to be good.”
The win over Fickett raises Gaethje’s pro record to 6-0 (13-0 overall), and as he told MMAWeekly.com, after a bit of a slow start, he’s looking to close out 2012 with a bang.
“I took the first part of the year to get ready and now I’m pushing hard and am trying to fight two more times before the end of the year,” he said.
“No matter what’s upcoming, I’m ready for it.”
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