It sounds like Demetrious Johnson is going to get his complete belt collection after all.
The UFC flyweight champion made some noise last week about the fact that he hasn’t received a new belt after each of his record-tying 10 consecutive title defenses.
According to UFC president Dana White, the company is on the case.
“I’m going to get him his belts,” UFC president Dana White told UFC.com following Johnson’s submission win over Wilson Reis at UFC on FOX 24. “He’s definitely getting his belt from tonight, and then I guess I’ve got some catching up to do.”
At the heart of this controversy is whether the UFC does, in fact, give a new belt to the winner of each championship match. White, for his part, says it’s not the case.
“That’s not the way it works,” White said. “You don’t get a new belt every time. You defend your belt, you keep your belt. If we were handing out belts with every single defense, that would be a lot of money. And to be honest with you, we don’t even have eight more belts. They bring ‘em, we order them as we do events. There’s going to be a backup on his belts, but he’s going to get them.”
Johnson, meanwhile, seems under the impression that even if this is policy these days, it wasn’t back in the day.
“I have one belt, the original belt I got from 2012, that was a new thing that they stopped giving champions belts,” Johnson said on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour. “There was a time before my time you had dominant champions like Matt Hughes, Anderson Silva, GSP, that they just kept winning, winning, winning and they had eight or nine belts, and they kept saying, there was word on the street they were selling them or giving them away. Those are all rumors.”
Either way, “Mighty Mouse” doesn’t ask for much, but he’s going to get his wish and take his photo with the belts for history’s sake.
“When I get the belts, if I’m able to take that picture, then we’ll decide if I get to keep it or not,” Johnson said. “Nothing’s set in stone until you have to have it in your hands and walk away.”