UFC FN 42: MMA Lab’s John Crouch Believes John Moraga “Feels Good Wherever” in Rematch With John Dodson
By Kelsey Mowatt
Nearly one year after John Moraga came up short against flyweight champ Demetrious Johnson at UFC on FOX 8, the accomplished wrestler continues to work his way back to another title shot.
Following a decision win over Dustin Ortiz in January, Moraga has been booked to fight John Dodson at UFC Fight Night 42 on June 7th. Not only is it an opportunity for Moraga to take out the division’s number one contender, but it’s a chance to avenge one of two defeats he’s incurred to date.
“The only person John has lost to in his life are Dodson and the champ, so, there you go,” MMA Lab coach John Crouch recently relayed on Full Contact Fighter Radio, who has helped build Moraga into one of the UFC’s top 125’ers. “From what I heard, it was down in Costa Rica, and there was an eight minute round or something, so who knows what happened down there.”
The two fought in in December, 2010, and Dodson went on to earn a unanimous decision win over Moraga (14-2). Since the defeat, the latter has gone 8-1, and Moraga has also scored wins over established vets like Chris Cariaso and Ulysses Gomez along the way.
Dodson (15-6), meanwhile, is 4-1 since he faced Moraga. The Jackson’s MMA fighter also worked his way into a title fight with Johnson in 2013, but lost by unanimous decision.
“So both guys are fantastic fighters,” Crouch added. “Dodson is just so quick and so explosive. So obviously you have to try and deal with that and not let him feel comfortable, and get his rhythm started, because he’s very dangerous if you let him going.”
Dodson has certainly demonstrated he’s capable of handing opponent’s a short night, as the flyweight has scored stoppages win over the likes of TJ Dillashaw, Jussier “Formiga” and most recently Darrell Montague.
That said, Moraga has also showcased that he’s built on his All American wrestling pedigree, as evidenced in his victories over Cariaso and Gomez. The former NCAA Division 1 wrestler has recorded stoppage or submission wins in eight of his pro victories thus far.
“You know, I think he feels good wherever it goes honestly,” said Crouch, when asked if Moraga’s wrestling and grappling game could provide the key to victory. “I think he likes the match-up with Dodson; he’s excited and he’s been looking forward to it for a long time. He kind of thought they’d cross paths once again.”
“Both guys are so good,” the BJJ black belt furthered, who also coaches UFC vets like former lightweight champ Benson Henderson, Jon Tuck, and Yaotzin Meza, among others. “I think anywhere it goes, we just have to work to put our tempo and our stamp on it.”
UFC FN 42 will be hosted by the Tingley Coliseum in Albuquerque, New Mexico and will feature Benson Henderson taking on Rustam Khabilov in the main event.