SEATTLE – For the past several years, any talk of UFC superfights has centered around former middleweight champion Anderson Silva either moving down to fight Georges St-Pierre or up to meet Jon Jones. With Silva’s recent loss, those discussions have cooled, but if UFC flyweight title holder Demetrious Johnson has his way, that talk may start centering around the sport’s lighter divisions.
Right now my focus is John Moraga,” Johnson told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). “But I think if everything goes well with this fight and I tackle this challenge and come out victorious, everybody is talking about the superfights and middleweight with Anderson Silva and Jon Jones and ‘GSP.’ I think there are superfights to be had in the flyweight division and bantamweight division.”
Johnson, of course, used to compete in the UFC’s bantamweight division and even competed once for the title in that weight class, though he ended up losing a unanimous decision to current champ Dominick Cruz. But when the UFC added the 125-pound division, “Mighty Mouse” dropped to flyweight and claimed the promotion’s first title in that division. On Saturday night, Johnson (17-2-1 MMA, 5-1-1 UFC) meets Moraga (13-1 MMA, 2-0 UFC) in the main event of UFC on FOX 8, which takes place at Seattle’s KeyArena and airs on FOX.
According to oddsmakers, Johnson is as much as a 5-to-1 favorite to retain his title, which would mark the second consecutive defense of his belt. While the UFC’s flyweight division is still in its developmental stages, according to UFC President Dana White, Johnson believes his future could include moving back up to 135 pounds.
“When I fought at 135, I did pretty well there, and I think since my time being there, I’ve evolved as a fighter and got more used to fighting,” Johnson said. “I think once Renan Barao and Eddie Wineland and Dominick Cruz sort their things out, if Dana White wants to do a superfight with us – and obviously if the contract is right, now, let’s not kid ourselves – (I’d be willing to move up).
“I’m always up for that. This is about doing stuff for fun and tackling challenges and making history. I wouldn’t mind being part of the first flyweight fight against a bantamweight.”
For the latest on UFC on FOX 8, stay tuned to the UFC Rumors section of the site.