NEW YORK – Newly topped UFC bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw is able to drop to the flyweight division to problem champ and pound-for-pound king Demetrious Johnson.
Is Johnson prepared to simply accept? That’s the $2 million query, however Dillashaw thinks it is going to occur.
“Demetrious can’t run from this one,” Dillashaw mentioned after his second-round stoppage of Cody Garbrandt to reclaim the title at UFC 217. “This one’s too big. (Johnson) broke his (title-defense) record. He got to pad himself and break his record. Now, let’s make some money.”
With the belt round his waist, Dillashaw’s bargaining energy is quite a bit higher than a number of months again, when Johnson (27-2-1 MMA, 15-1-1 UFC) rejected a matchup with him in favor of a record-breaking struggle towards Ray Borg at UFC 215 for his 11th straight title protection.
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The method Dillashaw (15-Three MMA, 11-Three UFC) sees it, it’s in Johnson’s greatest monetary curiosity to take this provide.
“(Johnson is) talking about how he wants those seven-figure fights – well, this is it,” Dillashaw mentioned at UFC 217’s post-event press convention after the pay-per-view occasion at Madison Square Garden. “Step up, be a man of your word, and let’s get this fight going.”
UFC President Dana White isn’t any extra against the thought now than he was when he tried to get Johnson to face Dillashaw after Garbrandt was compelled to withdraw from a headliner at UFC 213.
Despite the truth that Dillashaw by no means has competed within the octagon at 125 kilos, White seems prepared to offer the thought a shot.
“It’s not up to me to feel confident about it,” White mentioned of Dillashaw’s weight minimize. “It’s him. Does he feel confident he can make that weight, and he was very confident when I talked to him that he could do it.”
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Perhaps the larger impediment is the greenback determine that can be wanted to encourage Johnson, who’s beforehand rejected strikes up in weight except given a $2 million payday.
“He’s a partner in the pay-per-view,” White mentioned. “Let’s see what your pay-per-view does. You’re a accomplice. Let’s see what you make.
“Listen, you can’t be in a position where you’re like, ‘I want $2 million, (Expletive) you, I don’t care what you make. I don’t care how much this thing sells. I just want $2 million.’ Go tell your boss you want $2 million. You don’t give a (expletive) what it costs him. See what he says.”
Dillashaw admits it received’t be straightforward for him to maneuver down in weight. But after getting spurned by Johnson the primary time round, he’s offering all of the verbal incentives wanted to make the struggle a actuality this time.
And it wouldn’t be that a lot of a stretch to drop the kilos, he provides.
“The reason why I look so lean at 135 is the way I work,” Dillashaw mentioned. “I put muscle on to be at 135. I’m not an enormous (bantamweight). I stroll round at 150, however I stack on, and I keep lean. I saved my eating regimen since ‘The Ultimate Fighter.’ I’ve been on a brand new eating regimen with a brand new power and conditioning coach, and he retains the muscle on me, as a result of that’s what I want.
“When I go to (flyweight), we’re going to have to lean that down. It is a lifestyle change.”
For full protection of UFC 217, try the UFC Events part of the location.