UFC Champ Demetrious Johnson Tells Flyweight Critics: “We’re Very Technical; We Have Power, We Have Cardio And All That Good Stuff.
By Kelsey Mowatt
It’s been less than a month since Demetrious Johnson became the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s first ever, flyweight champion, but the 26 year-old-fighter already has to begin thinking about his first title defense. On account of his recent victory over Jussier “Formiga” on October 5th, Jon Dodson has been tapped by the promotion to challenge Johnson next.
“Well, he’s obviously fast like I am,” Johnson recently said on Full Contact Fighter Radio, when asked to breakdown the abilities of the number one contender. “He looks like he likes to stay on his feet; he’s not a submission guy, so I don’t have to worry about that aspect of the game. In his previous fights he’s been the most dangerous on his feet.”
Dodson secured his number one contender ranking by stopping “Formiga” in the second round, which also marked the former TUF winner’s third straight Octagon win.
“I saw the fight; it was a good fight,” Johnson said. “For me, I don’t really worry about who I’m going to fight next, I just worry about myself, make sure I’m healthy, do my work in the gym so I can go in there and do my job.”
Although Johnson relayed that he hasn’t had any discussions yet with the UFC as to when the bout will happen, he still believes the fight could take place within 2012.
“Oh you never know,” said Johnson, while discussing when his first title defense could get booked. “It’s up to the UFC. They could call me tonight, and say “someone got injured; can you fight next month?” So it’s not something I’ve really thought about. Congrats to Jon Dodson; I’m looking forward to our engagement, and other than that, I’m out here relaxing and enjoying my life.”
Of course, Johnson laid claim to the UFC flyweight belt by handing the highly regarded Joseph Benavidez a split decision loss at UFC 152 last month. Johnson had worked his way into the title fight by earning a unanimous decision victory over Ian McCall in June.
“It was a good fight,” said Johnson, when asked for his thoughts on the extremely competitive fight. “I was happy with my performance. Joseph Benavidez is a really tough guy and he’s not one of those guys where you can just go in there and take control. I felt like I had the edge in every aspect of the game, but it was a great fight.”
“It’s going good,” Johnson furthered, when asked how life as the UFC flyweight champion is treating him. “I’m taking some time off from the gym, I’m staying in shape with lifting, swimming and running, but other than than, everything’s going good. Been spending a lot of time with my wife.”
While Johnson’s five round fight with Benavidez featured dizzying action at times and several memorable moments, the bout was not universally well received. In fact, due to the negative feedback from certain fans in attendance and on Twitter, Dana White told critics afterwards “don’t ever buy another UFC pay-per-view again.”
“My response to people booing is that you can never make everyone happy,” Johnson said. “I think with the flyweights, when we’re definitely going after it, you’re going to see more technical fights and that’s just the way it is. We’re very technical; we have power, we have cardio and all that good stuff.
“For Dana White to stick up for us, that’s just fantastic,” added Johnson. “That just shows to his character how he passionate he is about the sport and how knowledgeable he is as well. He’s not just a promoter and trying to make money off of us, he’s actually out there saying, ‘guys, this is the best of the best of the world, have some respect…I appreciate him for that.”