TJ Dillashaw may have talked his way into a flyweight title shot against dominant champion Demetrious Johnson in August according to Dana White.
Dillashaw had first suggested the idea when it emerged recently that his bantamweight title fight with current champion Cody Garbrandt was under threat due to his opponent suffering from a back injury.
White had indicated at the time that he liked the idea, and with Garbrandt vs Dillashaw now having been officially scrapped from UFC 213 in July, he has now confirmed to ESPN’s Brett Okamoto that he’d now like to go ahead with Johnson Vs Dillasahw a month later, which would probably mean it would land on the UFC 215 pay-per-view event.
However, there could be a potential spanner in the works, as Johnson has already indicated that he’s less than enthusiastic about the idea.
“There’s other challengers in the division with more wins and on a winning streak,” Johnson said recently when Dillashaw first suggested the match-up. “This wouldn’t be a super-fight because T.J. is not a champion. He’s just a 135er coming down to 125 to skip the line that other flyweight competitors have worked hard to climb.”
‘Mighty Mouse’ may be particularly reluctant to face a daunting opponent like former 135lb champion Dillashaw as he needs just one more win to claim the record for most title defenses in UFC history.
On the other hand, that fact would add extra spice to the fight, making it even more desirable in the eyes of White, who may well view this as the first fight in Johnson’s UFC career to date that could really capture fans imagination and be a decent draw on pay-per-view.
If pressure builds, it would also be hard for Johnson to say no to the fight if he wants to continue claiming that he is the best pound-for-pound fighter in the sport – a boast that many MMA pundits have backed after some stellar performances in the Octagon over the past few years.