Demetrious Johnson Happy To Be Called Out By Deiveson Figueiredo & Co
There is little doubt that Demetrious Johnson is one of the greatest mixed martial artists we’ve ever seen. Since signing with ONE Championship, the former UFC flyweight champion has won three straight bouts, and in doing so, was crowned the ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix winner.
Deiveson Figueiredo Wants A Piece Of Demetrious Johnson
However, his name still comes up whenever the words ‘UFC’ and ‘flyweight’ come up in the same sentence. To say the least, ‘Mighty Mouse’ has left a lasting impression on the promotion’s division, after making 11 successful title defences inside the Octagon. Even though he now competes in ONE, it hasn’t stopped fighters in his former promotion from calling him out. The latest being the new UFC flyweight champion, Deiveson Figueiredo. The third-ever UFC flyweight champion said he was confident that he could finish DJ.
“That’s definitely a fight that all the fans would want to see – me against Demetrious Johnson,” Figueiredo said after defeating Joseph Benavidez at UFC Fight Island 2 to win the UFC 125lbs title. “But if the UFC wants to bring him back, I’m going to be very happy. I’m going to knock him out and with a lot of pride, and I’m very happy to do that.”
“Building My Brand”
Johnson sees things differently. In fact, he likes to think that his time in the UFC has left a long-lasting impact in the division he once competed in. Speaking to the South China Morning Post‘s Post Fight Podcast, ‘Mighty Mouse’ said that he sees the call outs as a sign of respect for everything he achieved in the promotion.
“I don’t think anything of it,” the former UFC flyweight champion said, “If they want to mention my name, they can mention my name. That’s how I think of it. I think of it as them building my brand.
“I’m not even in the company anymore and I still get brought up all the time, which is awesome. That just speaks to what I have been able to do in my career in mixed martial arts.”
Demetrious Johnson vs Henry Cejudo 3?
Figueiredo isn’t the first fighter outside of ONE Championship to call out Johnson. Despite announcing his retirement, following his defence of the UFC bantamweight title at UFC 249 against Dominick Cruz, Henry Cejudo also hinted a possible trilogy fight with the man whom he took the UFC flyweight belt from. ‘Mighty Mouse’ beat ‘Triple C’ in their first encounter.
With regards to a third fight, DJ implied that the trilogy with Cejudo could end with a showdown in ONE Championship. But he did say that the former Olympic gold medalist may have to make some behavioural adjustments before coming over to fight in Asia, referring to an incident where the former UFC two-division champion used marijuana with boxing legend Mike Tyson on a podcast.
“I don’t know how ‘The King of Cringe’ would do [in ONE]. He does say a lot of things to build his brand. I’m assuming he would fit well, he’s a gold medallist. Other than that there is not much I can say.
“There are things, recreational drugs he does that is not allowed in Japan and Singapore. In America, you can smoke pot and be upfront about it but I don’t know what ONE Championship wants. At the end of the day, it’s up to them if they want him to come over.”
Johnson is scheduled to challenge Adriano Moraes for the ONE flyweight championship. But with the travel restrictions still in place around the world, the 33 year old isn’t expecting it to happen anytime soon.
“Don’t hold your breath,” said the ONE Flyweight Grand Prix winner.
ONE Championship made a triumphant return with ONE: No Surrender this past weekend in Bangkok, Thailand. No Surrender Parts 2 and 3 are also scheduled to take place in Bangkok on August 14th and August 21st respectively.
Do you think we will ever we see a cross-promotional fight between Demetrious Johnson and Henry Cejudo?