Esther Lin, MMA Fighting
Anthony Johnson is ready to begin his post-octagon career.
The powerful striker who was cut from the UFC after missing weight and then losing his match at UFC 142 has his next bout set, and it's a good one. He'll face another UFC veteran, Dave Branch, at Titan Fighting 22.
The bout was first reported by Inside MMA's Ron Kruck, and since confirmed by Titan. It will be contested at middleweight, which is likely to be Johnson's home for the foreseeable future.
The 28-year-old Johnson (10-4) recently announced his signing with Titan on The MMA Hour. The move came after the UFC cut ties with him in January. Johnson had a four-year run with the promotion, going 7-4 in 11 bouts. His career, though promising, was marked by issues with missing weight. He failed to make contracted weight three times, with the last miss costing him greatly. His January bout was supposed to be his middleweight debut, but Johnson weighed in at 197. He later said a medical problem was at fault, but the UFC still released him.
Still, given his relative youth and success, he was a sought-after free agent.
Branch is 10-2 all time and has won both of his fights since leaving the UFC, earning victories over Jeremy May and Dominique Steele.
Titan 22 takes place at Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kansas on May 25.
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