Demetrious Johnson Reveals Reason He Could Move Up In Weight

UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson is coming off one his biggest wins of his career as he made his 11th consecutive title defense last Saturday at UFC 216 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada over Rae Borg by submission in the fifth round. Following that bout, the big question that is on everyone’s minds […]

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UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson is coming off one his biggest wins of his career as he made his 11th consecutive title defense last Saturday at UFC 216 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada over Rae Borg by submission in the fifth round.

Following that bout, the big question that is on everyone’s minds is what’s next for the UFC champion. He does have some options. He could defend his title again, or he could move up in weight for a possible super-fight at 135-pounds.

If you recall, Johnson did begin his career as a bantamweight. However, he decided to move down to flyweight when the UFC opened up the division in 2012, and since then, his career took off.

During an appearance on this week’s episode of The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani, Johnson went on record by stating that he is willing to make the jump back up, but only if it comes with better compensation.

“Make it worth my while. Show me the money,” Johnson said on Monday’s MMA Hour episode (via MMA Fighting). “These guys are taking concussions. Like I said after the fight, I’m not in the business to get concussions. I do not like getting hit. I can take a hit, but I don’t want to damage my brain if I don’t have to.”

Until then, Johnson stated that he is staying put at flyweight and is looking for his next challenger and wants to keep his record for the most title defenses in the UFC.

“Obviously there’s fights at 125 that seem appealing. Sergio Pettis is a hot prospect. Henry Cejudo looked good in his last fight. I know Joseph Benavidez is getting healthy again. So I don’t know see why I would leave when I just cemented this legacy. Why not set it to 15 (title defenses)?”

“There’s going to come another guy down the road who’s going to be aiming for my record, so my job is to set the bar high. And Joanna Jedrzejczyk, she’s at six. So you know what, she might want to keep on going and try to break my record, and I can’t allow that. So I’ve got to set the bar higher, that why she’s like, ‘F–k that, I’m not going to go for 20. I’m done. I did eight or nine, I’m done.’”

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Demetrious Johnson Deserves Seven-Figure Payday to Move Up for Superfight

At UFC 216, Demetrious Johnson became the most successful champion in UFC history. By defeating Ray Borg via suplex armbar, Johnson notched his 11th title defense, breaking the record set by Anderson Silva in 2012 and staking a strong claim to the “gre…

At UFC 216, Demetrious Johnson became the most successful champion in UFC history. By defeating Ray Borg via suplex armbar, Johnson notched his 11th title defense, breaking the record set by Anderson Silva in 2012 and staking a strong claim to the “greatest of all time” moniker.

With that accolade now in Johnson’s pocket, many have wondered what’s next for the flyweight champion. Speaking with MMAFighting.com’s Ariel Helwani on Monday’s edition of the MMA Hour, Johnson discussed what lies ahead as well as his intent to stay at 125 pounds for the foreseeable future, much to the chagrin of those who want to see him challenge heavier fighters.

“It was the easiest weight cut I ever had (at UFC 216). I mean, I woke up this morning at 138 pounds and I had a delicious chocolate stout, I had a bowl of cereal after,” he said (h/t MMAFighting.com‘s Shaun Al-Shatti for the transcription). And as for any move to the bantamweight division? “I’m just a small guy. I saw my boy, (UFC bantamweight) ‘Funkmaster’ Aljamain Sterling, he said, ‘Man, I just broke 160 pounds.’ And to me, I’m like, ‘Jesus, you are a big dude, my friend.'”

Warning, NSFW language in video

Despite the fact that Johnson has set the standard for MMA excellence for a few years now, the question of how he would do against an elite bantamweight has been asked frequently over recent months. This was spurred on by UFC President Dana White, who wound up in a public dispute with Johnson over his refusal to face former bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw. 

While Johnson’s reasons for turning down the fight were valid—boiling down to him not wanting to face a fighter with no name value who has never made flyweight on the eve of breaking that record—there was a fair bit of grumping about this from MMA fans as well as some pundits. 

The notion that Johnson is “scared of a challenge,” however, is absolutely silly. On top of the fact that he has faced a number of dangerous fighters at 125 pounds (including people who have nearly beaten him in the past), he’s down to fight any of the men who have called him out. The UFC just needs to pay him what he’s worth. And he’s worth seven figures.

“Make it worth my while,” he said. “Show me the money. These guys are taking concussions. Like I said after the fight, I’m not in the business to get concussions. I do not like getting hit. I can take a hit, but I don’t want to damage my brain if I don’t have to. … So I don’t know see why I would leave when I just cemented this legacy. Why not set it to 15 (title defenses).”

Even though the record is Johnson’s now, the toughest fights of his career may be just over the horizon, with an improved Henry Cejudo and hot prospect Sergio Pettis lined up to challenge him for the title. Johnson would enter fights with either of them as the favorite, sure, but the journey from 11 to 15 is shaping up to be harder than the trip from 0 to 10.

Of course, a nice layover fight against a bantamweight would be fun. But make no mistake: He’d be doing the UFC and his opponent a favor by taking that fight. And favors shouldn’t come free in the prizefighting business.

Read more MMA news on BleacherReport.com

The Question: What Is the Greatest Submission in MMA History?

Even if you didn’t catch UFC 216 in person, by now you have likely seen or at least heard about Demetrious Johnson’s mind-bending armbar submission on Ray Borg in the evening’s co-main event.
The flyweight champion suplexed Borg and on the way down jum…

Even if you didn’t catch UFC 216 in person, by now you have likely seen or at least heard about Demetrious Johnson’s mind-bending armbar submission on Ray Borg in the evening’s co-main event.

The flyweight champion suplexed Borg and on the way down jumped into position and had the armbar cinched in almost before they could settle on the ground. It was a pretty gnarly armbar too, and it helped Johnson set the UFC record for consecutive title defenses.

You know a move is good when people rush to give it a name. Plenty of pundits dubbed it “the mouse trap.” Johnson himself calls it The Mighty Wiz-Bar, which doesn’t have quite the same ring to it, but hey, that’s just me.

The whole thing got the Bleacher Report MMA brain trust to thinking. What is the greatest MMA submission of all time?

Obviously, there are different ways to approach the topic. It could mean degree of difficulty. It could mean historical significance. It could be influenced by the stakes of a given contest. And it could be a combination of factors.

Several writers weigh in with their selections. A video is included for each one. They are listed in no particular order. We have Chad Dundas, Jonathan Snowden, Matthew Ryder, Jeremy Botter, Nathan McCarter, Steven Rondina and yours truly, Scott Harris. Let’s get it on.

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UFC 216 Medical Suspensions: Ray Borg Possibly Out Six Months

UFC 216 has come and gone, and what an amazing event it was for mixed martial arts (MMA) fans. In the main event of the evening, longtime UFC lightweight contender Tony Ferguson solidified himself as the interim lightweight champion of the world when he forced No. 7-ranked Kevin Lee to tap out to a triangle […]

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UFC 216 has come and gone, and what an amazing event it was for mixed martial arts (MMA) fans.

In the main event of the evening, longtime UFC lightweight contender Tony Ferguson solidified himself as the interim lightweight champion of the world when he forced No. 7-ranked Kevin Lee to tap out to a triangle choke in the third round of their bout.

The night’s co-main event saw UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson become the most successful champion in MMA history when he defended his 125-pound strap for a record-breaking 11th consecutive time. “Mighty Mouse” pulled off a legendary suplex-to-armbar submission in the fifth round that forced Borg to tap out. The finish will live on in UFC highlight reels for years to come.

(Photo by Brandon Magnus/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Fighting doesn’t come without consequences, however, as the UFC 216 medical suspensions have finally been released per MMA Fighting. You can check them out here below:

– Ray Borg: Requires right fourth finger to be cleared by orthopedic doctor or no contest until 04/06/18; minimum suspension of no contest until 11/07, no contact until 10/29

– Evan Dunham: Requires ophthalmologist clearance on blurred vision or no contest until 04/06/18; minimum suspension of no contest until 12/07, no contact until 11/22

– Poliana Botelho: Requires right elbow and right thumb to be cleared by orthopedic doctor or no contest until 04/06/18; minimum suspension of no contest until 11/07, no contact until 10/29

– Matt Schnell: Requires right forearm to be x-rayed, if possible then requires clearance by orthopedic doctor or no contest until 04/06/18

– Marco Beltran: Requires right left thumb to be x-rayed and cleared by orthopedic doctor or no contest until 04/06/18; minimum suspension of no contest until 11/07, no contact until 10/29

– Thales Leites: Requires possible right orbital fracture to be cleared by ophthalmologist or no contest until 04/06/18; minimum suspension of no contest until 11/22, no contact until 11/07

– Lando Vannata: Suspended until 12/07, no contact until 11/22

– Tom Duquesnoy: Suspended until 11/22, no contact until 11/07

– Bobby Green: Suspended until 11/22, no contact until 11/07

– Magomed Bibulatov: Suspended until 11/22, no contact until 11/07

– Kevin Lee: Suspended until 11/07, no contact until 10/29 due to possible left eye corneal abrasion

– Cody Stamann: Suspended until 11/07, no contact until 10/29

– Pearl Gonzalez: Suspended until 11/07, no contact until 10/29

– Mara Romero Borella: Must repeat MRI of the brain in six months, due 04/07/18

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Demetrious Johnson Wanted to Send a Message to Ray Borg at UFC 216

Demetrious Johnson didn’t let Ray Borg off easy for some pre-fight banter. This past Saturday night (Oct. 7), Johnson defended his Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) flyweight title against Borg. “Mighty Mouse” retained his title with a highlight reel submission. The successful title defense meant Johnson broke Anderson Silva’s UFC record. At the ceremonial weigh-ins before […]

Demetrious Johnson didn’t let Ray Borg off easy for some pre-fight banter. This past Saturday night (Oct. 7), Johnson defended his Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) flyweight title against Borg. “Mighty Mouse” retained his title with a highlight reel submission. The successful title defense meant Johnson broke Anderson Silva’s UFC record. At the ceremonial weigh-ins before […]

Five Best Fights To Make After UFC 216

UFC 216 took place last night (Oct. 7, 2017) live on pay-per-view from Las Vegas, Nevada, and the event proved to be a successful one. In the main event, Tony Ferguson submitted Kevin Lee in the third round to become the interim lightweight champion, setting up a potentially lucrative unification bout with returning champion Conor […]

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UFC 216 took place last night (Oct. 7, 2017) live on pay-per-view from Las Vegas, Nevada, and the event proved to be a successful one.

In the main event, Tony Ferguson submitted Kevin Lee in the third round to become the interim lightweight champion, setting up a potentially lucrative unification bout with returning champion Conor McGregor.

In the co-main event of the evening, dominant flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson submitted Ray Borg with a tremendous armbar, setting the record for the most consecutive title defenses by a UFC champion with 11.

Also on the main card, former heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum submitted late replacement Walt Harris in just 65 seconds.

With the event now in the rearview mirror, let’s take a look ahead at five fights to book after UFC 216:

Joshua Dahl for USA TODAY Sports

Conor McGregor vs. Tony Ferguson

Despite rumors swirling indicating that a trilogy bout between Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz could be in the works, the fight to make is a bout between McGregor and Ferguson.

McGregor has yet to defend his lightweight title since knocking out Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205 last November to become the champion, instead electing to take on Floyd Mayweather in a boxing match this past August. Now gearing up for his Octagon return, it’s time for the “Notorious” one to defend the strap, and he should do so against the interim champion.

Ferguson has now won an incredible 10 consecutive fights, establishing himself as one of the best lightweights in the world in the process.

From a stylistic standpoint, this fight is an intriguing one as well. Ferguson is one of the most exciting fighters on the roster, as he uses an unorthodox and unpredictable style. His unique striking arsenal, incredible pace and relentless submission attack would make for a stiff test for McGregor and his powerful counter-striking style.

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