On Saturday, April 23, MMA fans tuned in to watch Jon Jones return to MMA action at UFC 197: Jones vs. Saint Preux. Even though “Bones’” return was the promoted feature of the night, it was also a night Demetrious Johnson could possibly make history. Currently the UFC Flyweight Champion, if “Mighty Mouse” were to successfully defend his title against Henry Cejudo, he would tie Jones with eight successful championship defenses and join him in having the third-longest reign in UFC history.
That night, Demetrious Johnson proved victorious with a TKO win over Cejudo, the result of a knee followed by ground and pound. Not only that, but “Mighty Mouse” finished the job very quickly in the first round resulting in “The Messenger” being medically suspended for 45 days with no contest for 30 days.
Demetrious Johnson’s latest victory and how it is associated to the fact he is now tied with Jon Jones with the most successful title defenses in UFC history proves he is one of the best. However, did Johnson also prove he is relevant despite being “boring?”
It should be noted that Demetrious Johnson being called “boring” is mostly a matter of major opinion, primarily for two reasons. The first is how Johnson fights. John Moraga, one of the flyweight fighters in UFC, simply said he thinks Johnson is boring during an interview back in 2013, as reported by Yahoo! Sports. Moraga attacked Johnson’s lack of finishing at the time, saying he “keeps it safe.”
“I think he just bounces around, he runs around so much and he don’t fight. You know, he doesn’t put on exciting fights. He has a lot of technique and a lot of skill, but he doesn’t go in there and try to finish people, I don’t feel.”
The second reason Demetrious Johnson is labeled boring is the fact he’s an all-around nice guy that rarely trash talks. There are times when Johnson does say something in an attempt to rile people up, especially when he called MMA fans who think he is boring a bunch of f*****g idiots. However, those who truly follow “Mighty Mouse” can tell he just doesn’t verbally cause waves like Nate Diaz, Conor McGregor, or Ronda Rousey do.
At this point in Demetrious Johnson’s career, the aforementioned reasons why people have an opinion of him being boring are not worth its weight. Plenty of MMA fans want to see blood, want to see both fighters decimate each other. However, there are just as many MMA fans who find technical fighting and delivering “the perfect fight plan” to be hallmarks of MMA entertainment, something Demetrious Johnson is known for. Also, if Johnson fully executes his plan, he will win by knockout or submission, something he did 14 times which includes John Moraga. Also, MMA fighters can be entertaining to his fans in other ways instead of being arrogant and trash talking. Johnson does it through fun interaction with fans, especially when he plays video games on Twitch TV. It was especially entertaining when Johnson was randomly drug tested during one of his live streams.
Nevertheless, MMA fans are going to think what they want to think. If they feel that Demetrious Johnson is boring, then that is what they’ll think. But ultimately, it does not negate Johnson proving his relevance after so many years of him and the flyweight division being branded as irrelevant. As an example of such, there are serious debates on whether he or Jon Jones are the pound-for-pound best in UFC, as reported by MMA Junkie.
If Demetrious Johnson continues to stay on the winning path, without the shadow of a doubt more people will see how relevant he truly is to UFC. This is especially true if Johnson successfully defends his championship three more times. If he accomplishes that, Johnson will hold the record for the most consecutive UFC title defenses.
[Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images]