Demetrious Johnson Reveals His Favourite Belt
In the year since being traded to ONE Championship, Demetrious Johnson has come through three tough matchups in his new promotion, en route to winning the ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix. The win over Danny Kingad in last month’s final in Tokyo at ONE: Century, also gave him the next title shot against the reigning ONE flyweight champion, Adriano Moraes.
The tournament victory earned the American athlete the prestigious ONE Championship Grand Prix belt, to add in his collection of titles under his name. Not only does it carry prestige, the belt is also very eye-catching. So much so, that it took some convincing from DJ, before the U.S. customs would allow him to enter the country with it. As the 33 year old explained to MMA Junkie.
“Yeah, I got stopped. You can’t bring something like that through and not expect them to be curious,” Johnson stated.
“They were like, ‘What is that?’ And I’m like, ‘a belt.’ And then they were like, ‘Where did you get that?’ And I’m like, ‘in Asia.’ And then I guess they weren’t MMA fans, so I had to explain the whole deal with it.”
“Not too many people pull through customs with huge title belts. So it took a while, but once I explained it they were cool,” he added.
The former UFC flyweight champion is very vocal about how special the ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix and he reiterated that it is indeed his favourite among the belts he’s held in his professional career.
“This is my favourite one, man. This one means the most to me. Years ago I was a huge fan of PRIDE, and you’d see the belts guys like Mirko Cro Cop got when they won their grand prix tournaments. That was a special deal.”
Winning the tournament in Japan, cemented the value of his newly-acquired strap, mainly because of the decorated history of that country in combat sports.
“So to go over to Japan, with their history for tournaments and add my name to the list of people who have won tournaments and get the belt, yeah, that makes this one real special for me.”
Demetrious Johnson is expected to challenge Adriano Moraes for the ONE flyweight title, in early 2020.