If former UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson does indeed migrate to ONE Championship as expected, he’ll receive a warm welcome from two familiar faces. His long-time head coach Matt Hume is ONE Championship’s Vice President of Operations, while Bibiano Fernandes, arguably the most crucial training partner of his illustrious career, is the promotion’s reigning bantamweight champion.
Bibiano Fernandes, who has become one of ONE Championship’s biggest stars, believes that Demetrious Johnson would be a perfect fit for the promotion. ONE, Fernandes reminds, places far more value on performances than it does on things like trash talk and showmanship.
“Yeah you know why [Demetrious Johnson will fit in]? It’s because you can look back at the past,” Bibiano Fernandes said on the forthcoming episode 103 of BJPENN.COM Radio. “Martial Arts started thousands of years ago and MMA is something new, MMA is a new sport. Martial arts have been around for centuries, thousands of years ago and it keeps changing. That’s the way it is. Today MMA has changed for entertainment but [ONE is] more for martial arts.
“That’s the thing, the athletes in North America have to promote themselves,” Fernandes continued. “The athletes have a lot more pressure in North America. Every fighter has pressure, but they have to try and get the pay-per-view points and if you don’t win you can get cut. It’s very hard for the athletes to make some money. In ONE Championship, they take care of every champion and they do a really good job. For the longest time, fighters had the pressure to be on the pay-per view and when they don’t make it out there they go crazy and lose their job and lose everything. But that’s the life. If you’re good you’re good. Listen, you have a chance to live better with ONE Championship.
“You still have to go there and do your best. You still have to show up and bring the fight and put on a show for the fans. But you just have to go there and bring the fight, that’s very different.
“DJ has a family, he’s not into trash talking, he lives a very simple life. He just tries to look after his family just like I try to look after my family, just like a lot of mixed martial artists are just trying to look after their families. So in my opinion, if DJ moves over to ONE Championship it would be the best thing for his life. Because honestly, he did everything he could do in the UFC already and he can’t get anything more from there.”
How do you think Demetrious Johnson will fit in at ONE Championship?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 10/26/2018.