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A Healthy Anthony Johnson staying at 170

JKhrome12011-04-06 19:33:41 +0000 #1
Healthy UFC Fight Night 24 co-headliner Anthony Johnson staying at 170 pounds

by Dann Stupp on Mar 22, 2011 at 9:25 am ET



As part of his current 16-month layoff, Anthony Johnson wrestled with both his weight and a lack of attention.

He admits his knee surgery and a subsequent layoff had him feeling down, and the welterweight gained noticeable weight in the process.

But Johnson (8-3 MMA, 5-3 UFC), who returns to action Saturday to meet Dan Hardy (23-8 MMA, 4-2 UFC) in a UFC Fight Night 24 co-headliner, said his previous comments about a possible move to middleweight never were serious. Instead, he simply needed some attention.

"When I said I was thinking about going to 185, I just did that to get everyone talking," Johnson, who fights Hardy on the Spike TV-televised main card at Seattle's KeyArena, told MMAjunkie.com ( www.mmajunkie.com: www.mmajunkie.com ) during a recent media call. "It worked obviously.

"You've got to keep your name out there some type of way even when you're out for a year."

Before a submission loss to Josh Koscheck at UFC 106 (his most recent bout), Johnson won four of five fights, and the lone defeat came via controversial TKO loss. The referee missed Burns poking Johnson in the eye, which led to the loss, but he avenged the defeat with a head-kick knockout and earned "KO of the Night" honors in an immediate rematch.

Johnson was a top prospect in the division and a fast-rising contender, and on Saturday, he hopes to prove he still is. So, Johnson, who previously has missed weight for his welterweight fights, doesn't want to waste that momentum, especially in such a competitive division.

"Welterweight is still my home," he said. "It has the best athletes, the best ground fighters, the best standup fighters, the best everything. I don't want to go anywhere. I want to stay at 170."

Johnson, though, admits the layoff was trying. After years of knee injuries, his surgery was supposed to bring much-needed relief. But the lengthy recovery process, which kept him out of the gym, weighed on his psyche.

"I got pretty big after sitting out for a year," he said. "I got big, and I got lazy for a while with my injury. I was feeling bad for myself and started eating all kinds of crap, which was nobody's fault but my own. ... Now, my weight is great. I'm feeling good, and I can't wait for Saturday."

Johnson put off the surgery as long as possible. But after getting booked for a fight with rival John Howard and then re-injuring his knee, he knew he finally needed to get it fixed.

"I tore meniscus about three years ago actually, and I never got it fixed," he said. "I'm too stubborn. Every camp that I was getting ready for a fight, I was always tweaking my knee, and that kept ripping my meniscus more and more and more. I never got it fixed.

"I was supposed to fight John Howard, and I knew. I was like, 'With a guy like that, that I really don't like, I don't want any excuses for anything.' Not that I ever look for excuses. So I decided to have surgery because I tore my meniscus again when I was training for John Howard, and I knew I just needed to get it done and over with because this is the big leagues. You can't go in there with too many injuries."

The surgery was a success, and it's already boosted his confidence ahead of his meeting with Hardy, a former UFC title challenger.

"I'm glad I did it," Johnson said. "I feel great now. I don't have one complaint about my knee now."

For more on UFC Fight Night 24, stay tuned to the UFC Rumors section of MMAjunkie.com.


JKhrome12011-04-06 19:40:13 +0000 #2
call me crazy !! but if Rumble is able to get his shit together (training/weight cutting) i believe he'll be UFC WW champion by next year.
JAX2011-04-06 20:22:50 +0000 #3
Quote:

Originally Posted by JKhrome1



call me crazy !! but if Rumble is able to get his shit together (training/weight cutting) i believe he'll be UFC WW champion by next year.

I don't know about that, I honestly thinks he cuts too much weight, when he fights tougher guys and the fight goes the distance that weight cutting can be a factor. but he knows what he's doing I guess so we'll see how he makes out against Hardy.
JAX2011-04-06 20:23:36 +0000 #4
Quote:

Originally Posted by JKhrome1



call me crazy !! but if Rumble is able to get his shit together (training/weight cutting) i believe he'll be UFC WW champion by next year.

delete.
tw0mey2011-04-06 20:18:08 +0000 #5
I think he has the potential, his size would be just too much if he gets everything set. He's extremely explosive and powerful too.
Thcoteo2011-04-06 20:02:20 +0000 #6
Quote:

Originally Posted by JKhrome1



call me crazy !! but if Rumble is able to get his shit together (training/weight cutting) i believe he'll be UFC WW champion by next year.

I like RUmble, I think he could make a run or two at the title, he is pretty well rounded, I noticed though that he gets put on his back though and seems a little lost. He has good wrestling but with guys like GSP, Kos, and Shields leading the division, Kos has the worst take downs of those 3 and Kos got Rumble down with ease, so it could be a rough road for Johnson.

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