Since reclaiming the UFC bantamweight title with a knockout win of Cody Garbrandt at UFC 217, T.J. Dillashaw has been aggressively calling for a flyweight title shot against pound-for-pound king Demetrious Johnson but “Mighty Mouse” has been mostly disinterested in the fight. But with the tides of inevitability moving inexorably towards the superfight taking place, Johnson has gotten fully on board with the bout, just so long as it takes place on a major pay-per-view event.
Speaking recently with ESPN, Johnson explained that he was ready to fight Dillashaw but he wanted to do it on a “stacked” card, one that would be sure to draw in large PPV numbers and guarantee a big payday for the all-time great.
“It’s the superfight everyone wants,” said Johnson. “I think TJ and I are both on board. We just want to make sure it’s on a stacked card. We want to make sure we can benefit from a good pay-per-view buy. I think I deserve it, and I think he deserves it.
“I’d rather have somebody else main event, [someone] who is going to bring in way more PPVs. In my opinion, that’s held up the fight on my end. I’ve seen guys jump on [stacked] PPV cards and make $1.5 million, fighting an inferior opponent than who I’m about to fight. Me and TJ could fight on a smaller card and pull 275,000 buys, get an extra check for $75,000. My management told me, ‘You know what, we’ll hold out for a big event.’
”A lot of media and fans think that’s a way of turning down fights or ducking someone, but that’s a way of being a smart businessman and getting the most money you can get. ... I’ll wait for that opportunity, because in that one card, I’ll basically make more money than three fights -- a year and a half of my life -- [combined].”
Johnson is the longest reigning champion in UFC history and generally considered to be one of the best fighters ever but despite his success, mainstream stardom has eluded him. His most recent PPV outing only drew in a reported 120,000 buys and his lack of stardom and the monetary compensation that goes with that has been a sticking point between him and the UFC for some time now. But inclusion on a UFC supercard with multiple title fights on it, like the PPV for International Fight Week this summer figures to be, that would make everything alright for “Mighty Mouse.”
“If we can get three title fights - a champions vs. champions edition - that should do well,” Johnson said. “If they did Georges St-Pierre vs. Tyron Woodley, Amanda Nunes vs. [Cris] Cyborg and me vs. TJ, they can send me the contract. They can negotiate that contract now.”
But if the UFC isn’t interested in doing that, Johnson says he is sticking to his guns and not going to fight Dillashaw otherwise, even if they try and strongarm him.
“I’m straightforward,” Johnson said. “If UFC comes back and says, ‘You know what, Demetrious, we’re not going to give you that,’ I’ll say, ‘Perfect, send me the No. 1 contender in the flyweight division and TJ can stay up and fight whoever he wants.’ That’s how I am when it comes to this.
”I’m not going to sit here and f**king argue. ‘This is what I want. If you’re not going to give it to me, that’s fine. I’ll just keep fighting guys in my division. You want to strip me? Fine, perfect. Strip me. I’ll work my way back up the ladder.’
”I’ve beat everyone in my division. Now I’m waiting for my opportunity to be on the kind of card that makes that kind of money. And I’m not trying to piggyback off anyone else. I feel I bring a lot to the table - 11 title defenses. I should get that opportunity. If people disagree, that’s their problem. That’s what I feel I am worth.”
UFC 220 Rewind.
Woodley keeps chasing those lightweights.
DC’s gonna be on a Mardi Gras float.
No one in boxing seems to mind Dana getting into the space.
Pretty fun little scrap here.
Big time right hand here.
For all those who were desperate to see it, Tara LaRosa finally fought a dude on camera.
Tara LaRosa vs Kris Zylinski (Internet Troll) #Rolljunkie #McDojoLifePosted by Mcdojolife on Monday, January 22, 2018
Heavy Hands. Recapping the big weekend that was and a preview of UFC Charlotte.
SOCIAL MEDIA BOUILLABAISSE
Kavanagh is confident.
So @ufc have offered @GunniNelson v @darrentill2 main event #UFCLondon we've agreed so hoping to hear confirmation soon how do you guys like the match up? I'm reminded of the Thatch fight, big strong striker but I think Till is tougher challenge. One way to find out... pic.twitter.com/b7U81FpzBf— Coach Kavanagh (@John_Kavanagh) January 24, 2018
And so is Jon Jones who apparently thinks he’ll be back this year.
Good to know.
they're are reports of me being suspended for a lengthy amount of time due to fractures in one of my hands and my leg. this is completely false. i never injured my hand at all and my left leg is not fractured, i did an xray the night of fight and showed it is only a hematoma— Rory MacDonald (@rory_macdonald) January 24, 2018
Nice little trophy case. I guess the UFC started giving belts to fighters for each of their wins after the DJ thing.
Break the record once? Nahhh I still got shelf space. Who’s next? pic.twitter.com/DSBqWzpGq7— Stipe Miocic (@stipemiocicufc) January 24, 2018
Primus wants the rematch but Chandler seems pretty “whatever” about it.
no thanks, stay ready, I have already chosen the location if I choose to give you the rematch.— Michael Chandler (@MikeChandlerMMA) January 24, 2018
Doesn't sound like you want the rematch only if it's on your "special baby terms" I'm the champ come fight me if you really want the rematch #andstill— Brent Primus (@brentprimus155) January 24, 2018
no, I have made other plans. I have set aside a special venue for this fight.— Michael Chandler (@MikeChandlerMMA) January 24, 2018
Classiest man in combat sports.
Mateusz Gamrot (13-0, 1 NC) vs. Grzegorz Szulakowski (9-1); KSW 42, March 3.
TODAY IN MMA HISTORY
2007: Rashad Evans put on on the UFC highlight reel, starching Sean Salmon with a head kick knockout at UFC Fight Night 8.
2009: Jamie Varner won a technical split decision over Donald Cerrone at WEC 38 to retain his lightweight title. In the fifth round, Cerrone landed an illegal knee that forced the end of the bout, where the judges then rendered the decision for Varner.
That’s all for today, folks. Take it easy and see y’all tomorrow.
What division would you rather see the DJ vs. TJ fight take place in?
This poll is closed
130 lb catchweight
If you find something you'd like to see in the Morning Report, hit me up on Twitter @JedKMeshew and let me know about it. Also follow MMAFighting on Instagram, add us on Snapchat at MMA-Fighting, and like us on Facebook.