Though it’s far from official at this point, all signs point to the UFC booking a champion-vs.-champion superfight between bantamweight title-holder T.J. Dillashaw and flyweight kingpin Demetrious Johnson for later in the summer, possibly at UFC 226. Johnson is in need of new title challengers, having dominated his division since its inception, and Dillashaw has been campaigning to drop in weight and challenge “Mighty Mouse” for his 125-pound strap since last year, giving this fight all the makings of something special. But while the fight is hotly anticipated by many, one of Johnson and Dillashaw’s mutual opponents thinks Dillashaw is biting off more than he can chew.
John Dodson has stood across the cage from both men, beating Dillashaw but coming up short against Johnson twice, and in a recent Facebook Fan Q & A, “The Magician” says that if Dillashaw can’t beat him, he certainly can’t beat Johnson.
“It’s funny that he wants to fight Demetrious Johnson because if I didn’t beat Demetrious Johnson and he couldn’t beat me, that means he can’t beat him,” Dodson said. “That’s the way I look at that.”
Dodson is the only man to have stopped Dillashaw, knocking him out at The Ultimate Fighter 14 Finale to win that season’s bantamweight tournament. He then immediately dropped down to flyweight, beating a pair of top contenders before challenging Johnson for the belt at UFC on FOX 6 where he almost took the the title from Johnson, nearly knocking out “Mighty Mouse.” Johnson went on to win the fight by decision and then win their rematch two years later. After that, Dodson returned to bantamweight and now has his sights set on the man he knocked out in his UFC debut.
“I’m trying to work that way,” said Dodson. “As soon as I get this win, I’m gonna try to work up that little ladder so I can knock [Dillashaw} down off that pedestal. Everyone’s on this ‘Killashaw’ pedestal and they think that he’s the greatest thing ever but they keep on forgetting this fist knocked him out and knocked him silly. He did the stanky leg, all wobbly. And he’s like, ‘That was luck!’ No, that wasn’t luck. That’s called skill. That’s what people do.”
Dodson faces Pedro Munhoz at UFC Belem on Saturday and the winner will be in the hunt for a title shot with another win or two. But with Dillashaw potentially dropping down to 125 pounds for his next fight, the bantamweight division could be put on hold for a bit, circumstances that would normally bother top contenders but could have an prove beneficial to Dodson who says he wants a trilogy fight with Johnson since he “won the first,” but won’t return to flyweight because the weight cut is too difficult for him to make anymore.
“If he decides to move up to 135, that’s a possibility. I’m not trying to go back down to 125 [pounds] because my kidneys hurt a lot going down to that weight class. I had kidney failure two times and it doesn’t feel too good. It sucks.”
155. New weight-cutting requirements could force Max Holloway up to lightweight.
Bullet. Valentina Shevchenko showcased dance moves at UFC Belem open workouts.
Fun. Kevin Lee says Nate Diaz should fight him next, not “washed up” Eddie Alvarez.
Title. Ronaldo Souza feels he’s earned a title shot but willing to fight Chris Weidman next.
This Rizin post-event thing is great (English subtitles are an option).
Firas says Rory would KO Fedor if he got the chance to fight in the heavyweight GP.
Eddie on Mayweather in MMA.
Derrick Lewis staying on brand.
Mir on Fedor.
Heavy Hands. Previewing UFC Belem with special guest Zane Simon.
Bushido Talk. Discussing Stipe vs. DC, MayMac 2, Ronda to WWE, and more.
SOCIAL MEDIA BOUILLABAISSE
Come at the king, you best not miss… pic.twitter.com/uHx4SJngHx
— Floyd Mayweather (@FloydMayweather) February 1, 2018
When your older brothers not Home and you finally get to go in his room https://t.co/RE25nrvUYi
— Belal muhammad (@bullyb170) January 31, 2018
— Chris Camozzi (@ChrisCamozzi) January 31, 2018
— Cain Velasquez (@cainmma) January 31, 2018
Dillashaw weighs 145 right now.
This first picture is the night before I won back my Bantamweight title. This second picture is me this morning without a fight booked WARNING: Feet may cause loss of appetite. I can make 135 easy and 125 without question. 2018 will be my year! Thanks to @vitagoods and the Body Analyzer, I’ve been able to manage my weight accurately and efficiently. Get yours at vitagoods.com/tjd for 60% off! #ChampChamp #littlefoot
Oof. This event could be a rough one for ratings.
All eyes on the Sunshine State.
— UFC (@ufc) February 1, 2018
Jones’ whole team seems real optimistic he’ll be back this year.
Let’s give this another try – I predict we see Jones vs DC 3 for the HW title Dec 29, 18.
— Brandon Gibson (@SixGunGibson) February 1, 2018
Mayweather vs Cm Punk. I’m calling it now
— Derrick Lewis (@Thebeast_ufc) February 1, 2018
Hey Edwin Barboza. You’ll be praying for Mercy when I get my hands on you!!! Are you ready to get slapped in April wimp?!?! Put down the needle, pick up the pen, and sign the contract on your head!!! @edsonbarboza @seanshelby @danawhite @ufc #ufc
@danawhite @seanshelby @danhardymma I’m ready to step in and give @gunninelson a fight!! A European throw down between 2 black belts!! Let’s do it, or what do you say @gunninelson ?! #8fightwinstreak #buster #ufc #bielkhedenufc #ufclondon
I don’t know who the douche bag is that was in charge of who makes it on the game! But am I the only one who thinks it’s BS I’m not on UFC 3 pic.twitter.com/0qzHpyrNyi
— Jason TheKid Knight (@Jasonthekid23) January 31, 2018
Lol….”douche bag” I didn’t even know @Jasonthekid23 could spell that word https://t.co/6yj01K4i76
— Chase Sherman (@ChaseShermanUFC) January 31, 2018
I can spell better than you
— Jason TheKid Knight (@Jasonthekid23) January 31, 2018
Kristina Williams (1-0) vs. Emily Ducote (6-3); Bellator 195, March 2.
Ray Borg (11-3) vs. Brandon Moreno (14-4); UFC 223, April 7.
TODAY IN MMA HISTORY
2004: Mirko Cro Cop soccer kicked Ron Waterman into semi-consciousness at Pride 27.
2008: Luke Rockhold made his Strikeforce debut, knocking out Josh Neal at Strikeforce Young Guns II.
2014: Urijah Faber stepped up on short notice to replace the injured Dominick Cruz and rematch Renan Barao for the UFC bantamweight title at UFC 169. Barao won by somewhat controversial first round TKO. In the co-main event that evening, Jose Aldo won a unanimous decision over Ricardo Lamas to defend his featherweight title.
This event set the record for most decisions on a UFC card, with 10 of the fights going to the judges.
Take it easy and see y’all tomorrow.
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.