Anthony Johnson has been quick to emerge as a legitimate light heavyweight title threat during his second UFC stint, and now he has designs on a potential clash that could pave the way to a future title shot. “Rumble” has respectfully called out former title challenger Alexander Gustafsson on Facebook to be his next opponent in what would essentially be a title eliminator. Johnson says there’s no one left for them to fight and it’s a matchup that fans definitely want to see. UFC President Dana White has already stated he thinks Johnson vs. Gustafsson is a fight that makes sense.
“The Mauler” has been stewing after not getting the chance to face champion Jon Jones in a title rematch. He was replaced by Daniel Cormier at UFC 178 after suffering an injury but thought the opportunity would come his way after Jones suffered a leg injury that delayed his next defense until UFC 182 on Jan. 3. The organization has elected to keep the Jones-Cormier matchup in place after the major buzz that was generated by their wild brawl earlier this month in Las Vegas. While Gustafsson had been hoping to wait on the sidelines for a title fight, White has stated they plan to offer him another fight before then.
Johnson has looked terrific in producing a lopsided decision win against Phil Davis and an explosive 44-second destruction of Antonio Rogerio Nogueira. He’s currently riding an eight-fight win streak and has found a comfortable home in the 205-pound weight class. Johnson had major struggles with weight in his initial UFC tenure while trying to campaign as a welterweight.
Johnson vs. Gustafsson would be a tremendous matchup for the promotion to make. Both fighters are at the top of their games and are proven finishers. The UFC’s light heavyweight division would be in great shape if they could pit the Johnson/Gustafsson winner against whoever has the belt after Jones and Cormier finally square off in early 2015.
Rick LaFitte is an MMA Writer for Rant Sports