UFC President Dana White may not have been in attendance for Anthony Johnson's massacre of Alexander Gustafsson this past Saturday at UFC on FOX 14, but even he can't believe the ease with which Johnson handled the mighty Swede in his own backyard.
"It's crazy," White said Wednesday on The Jim Rome Show. "If you look at Anthony Johnson, Anthony Johnson started at 170 pounds, right? And this isn't like boxing where if you move up a weight class, it's three pounds. You move up a weight class here, it's 15 pounds. So he goes from 170 to 185. It's not like he was a world-beater at 170 or a world-beater at 185.
"If you know anything about fighting, every time you move up, you lose a little bit of knockout power. It's been the exact opposite for this guy. Him beating Alexander Gustafsson the way he did makes no sense whatsoever. This is a guy (Gustafsson) who went five hard rounds with Jon ‘Bones'. Many people believe he won that fight, and many people believe Jones won the fight. For [Johnson] to come out and knock out the guys in the 205-pound division that he is, it's unbelievable and I am very excited for the fight with him and Jon Jones."
Venturing into enemy territory to headline what was only the UFC's second stadium show, Johnson stunned Gustafsson with a quickness never seen before, badly beating the former No. 1 contender in under three minutes to secure a title shot against light heavyweight champion Jon Jones, which according to White is being targeting for May.
Johnson's violent knockout marked the sixth time in seven fights at light heavyweight that Johnson has finished his work without the help of the judges, and White expects "Rumble" to carry his headhunting style into his contest against Jones.
"I think it's going to be the exact same," White said. "If you look at how he went in there and cut off the Octagon and went right after [Gustafsson] and started dropping bombs on him, I think that's what he's going to try to do to Jones, too. The difference is, Jones has many, many tools. He's good at kicking that front leg. He's got spinning elbows. He's got the range and the distance."