Although it hasn’t been confirmed, it’s anticipated that former UFC flyweight champion and pound-for-pound number one Demetrious Johnson will be headed to ONE Championship very shortly.
But, there’s a catch.
As reported by ESPN’s Ariel Helwani on Wednesday, Johnson is expected to ‘trade’ places with former ONE FC welterweight champion Ben Askren, who could potentially sign with the UFC on the same day that ‘DJ’ signs with ONE Championship.
Askren, who is undefeated after 18 professional fights, is considered one of the best welterweights in the world and has teased at a move to the UFC in the past, calling out two-division champ Georges St-Pierre for a ‘superfight’ on multiple occasions. ‘Funky’ was also the former Bellator welterweight champion and went on to defend his title four times before eventually signing with ONE FC.
The news of this potential trade has taken the MMA world by surprise, and several pros had their say on Twitter.
Check out the reactions below.
Now you’re all in big big trouble!— Ben Askren (@Benaskren) October 25, 2018
Anyone know another Russian that needs humbled the old country way? pic.twitter.com/tEdSoUSX45— Ben Askren (@Benaskren) October 25, 2018
Good night world. Just so everyone knows I am pumped and excited for the future stay tuned!! #newadventure— Demetrious Johnson (@MightyMouse) October 25, 2018
Trades...— Scott Coker (@ScottCoker) October 24, 2018
FEED ME SOME NEW BLOOD! RT @ScottCoker: Trades...— Michael Chandler (@MikeChandlerMMA) October 24, 2018
Lastly...... I’ll fight at 135lbs lol I was a champion before and I can do it again, but I sadly can’t say that for the rest of the other talented individuals in the flyweight division. If the flyweight division is cut, what will happen to everyone? #ImportantQuestions pic.twitter.com/hLRynk4n1S— Jose Shorty Torres (@ShortyTorres125) October 24, 2018
I was waiting to beat @Cowboycerrone first but I threw my name out there on insta and I see him saying nobody is saying anything so let it be known @Benaskren gonna need some aspirin if I can get my name on the contract with him. That wrestling shit don’t scare me bitch— Platinum Mike Perry (@PlatinumPerry) October 25, 2018
This is getting Fun !!!! A lot of history being made @MightyMouseUFC IMO is , and will be for a long time the best to do it— Eddie Alvarez (@Ealvarezfight) October 24, 2018
Ok I put my tinfoil hat on for a moment and it came to me.— Michael Chiesa (@MikeMav22) October 24, 2018
Four man UFC Welterweight Grand Prix. Woodley vs Covington then Askren vs GSP. Winners face off to fight for the championship and welterweight GOAT status.
Who do you think wins?
The @UFC bringing in @Benaskren is like the U.S. funding and arming the Mujahedeen against Russia in Afghanistan. The enemy of my enemy is my friend. This is classic stuff because Askren is being brought in as a hitman.— Pat Miletich (@patmiletich) October 25, 2018
From reliable sources, UFC is really close to trading CM Punk for Bob Sapp. #tradedeadline— Din Thomas (@DinThomas) October 24, 2018
Hell ya. @Benaskren and Mighty Mouse should do a bare knuckle boxing match at King of Diamonds in Miami while we crowd around the ring spraying champagne and throwing money at them. https://t.co/psHJrkLw0U— Din Thomas (@DinThomas) October 24, 2018
Oh so we’re doing trades now— Derek Brunson (@DerekBrunson) October 24, 2018
170 pounds is about to get super interesting in the @ufc.— Ian McCall (@Unclecreepymma) October 24, 2018
Can you imagine the idea of promotions like @ufc and @bellatormma and onechampionship trading fighters like they do players in the @nfl @mlb and @nba This is the next level Free Market… https://t.co/hxmEDTuL66— Josh Thomson (@THEREALPUNK) October 24, 2018
First MMA trade in history!? Didn’t see this one coming... love the idea though Who wins this trade!?— Nik Lentz (@NikLentz) October 24, 2018
. Repost @out2c1974 #mma #boxing #bjj #wrestling #kickboxing #muaythai… https://t.co/KqTFtjNIsb
Have to wonder if this means they will be shutting down the 125 division??? https://t.co/e3zNHNl2EH— Austin Arnett (@AustinArnettMMA) October 24, 2018