For five years in the UFC, Demetrious Johnson was the undisputed king at 125lbs. But after losing the title in 2018 to Henry Cejudo, “Mighty Mouse” left for Singapore and signed with ONE Championship where he is the current champion at flyweight, after exacting revenge on Adriano Moraes over the weekend via a fourth-round flying knee KO win.
But unlike in the UFC, ONE’s flyweight division is contested at 135lbs, a weight that Johnson is more comfortable at. And as he told Ariel Helwani in a recent appearance on The MMA Hour, fighting back at 125lbs is a thing of the past.
“I’ve said this in the past, I don’t think I can make 125. I know I could, but do I want to do it? Absolutely not,” he said. “I don’t think it would be healthy for me, I don’t want to jeopardize my kidneys or my liver. So I don’t put myself in that category with Pantoja, Figueiredo, Moreno, all those guys.
“I put myself in the category with Aljamain Sterling, Petr Yan, ‘Sugar’ Sean O’Malley, Dominick Cruz…
“I’m not weighing at 125 pounds. I can’t make it anymore. I don’t want to make it anymore. For me, I see myself as a bantamweight here in America, where in Asia, it’s flyweight.”
A day after his big win over Moraes, Johnson said that he’s still only 136 lbs, which is small for flyweight by today’s standards, let alone bantamweight.
woke up this morning my weight was 136 rip im a smmmmaalllll bbbbooooiiii— Demetrious Johnson (@MightyMouse) August 27, 2022
As for any rankings or GOAT debates, the 36-year-old Johnson says being a champion is what matters, regardless of the weight classification.
“I truly believe that when it comes down to it when everything’s said and done and I walk away from this sport, I believe I’m one of the best flyweights to ever do mixed martial arts,” he said.
“You guys think I’m the best flyweight in the world right now, not fighting in America? Dope. That’s awesome. But, for me, I’m the champ, I’ll just leave it at that, y’all decide, I don’t want to get into this discussion.”
With the win over Moraes, Johnson improved his pro-MMA record to 31-4-1.