Demetrius ‘Mighty Mouse’ Johnson has been criticized by MMA fans for a while now for his unwillingness to move up to another weight class to challenge for the toughest fight. Johnson might be pound-for-pound top fighters in many people’s eyes, but that means nothing if he doesn’t fight the best out there.
But, according to Johnson, who will compete alongside Dillashaw this Saturday at UFC 227, the reigning flyweight champ did originally accept the bout but got injured. But once he was healthy, the offer didn’t come again.
“I accepted the fight, I got injured, I had surgery, and they never offered it to me after I got injured,” Johnson said during Tuesday’s UFC 227 media conference call, per MMA Junkie’s Mike Bohn. “When they offered it to me I accepted, I got injured and got surgery, and then when it came time to fight again, from my understanding, from my management’s point of view, T.J. got offered to fight Cody (Garbrandt) with a brand new deal, so God bless him for getting a new deal to fight Cody.
“So the entire lead-up to this fight, even in July, I was never offered to fight T.J. Dillashaw. Before I got injured I was up for fighting him, then they moved on and went with Cody and T.J.”
“If the money’s right,” he said. “I’ve always been up front about these super fights. Everyone keeps asking me. If the money’s not there and the compensation’s not there, then I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing. It’s obviously up to my management to make that happen. My management knows what I want, the UFC knows what I want and for me, I just show up and fight the No. 1 contender in the flyweight division and will continue to do that until something comes to my table that’s appetizing.”
UFC 227 takes place at Staples Center in Los Angeles. Johnson puts his 125-pound title on the line against Henry Cejudo (12-2 MMA, 6-2 UFC) in the pay-per-view co-headliner.