The most recent season of the Ultimate Fighter was produced with the singular goal of creating a fresh challenger for increasingly dominant flyweight champion Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson. In the end, the winner of this season was UFC veteran and former Titan FC champ Tim Elliott.
With this TUF win, Elliott was then pencilled in for a title fight against Mighty Mouse. And though very few people gave him much of a chance against the dominant flyweight king, he actually put up a remarkably good fight. In the end, however, Mighty Mouse walked away with a unanimous decision win, leaving Elliott’s title dreams momentarily dashed.
In the wake of this loss, Elliott announced his intention to move up to the 135-pound bantamweight division, citing an extremely difficult cut to the flyweight division’s 125-pound cap. Since then, however, Elliott has reconsidered, and intends to stay at flyweight – so long as he gets the kind of big-name opponents that will lead him to a rematch with the champ.
Tim Elliott explained this choice on a recent episode of BJ Penn Radio.
“I told myself I wasn’t going to do [the UFC] any favors anymore,” he said. “When I first got into the UFC, I took a fight on six days notice to fight John Dodson. He was he number-one guy in the world and I fought him to a decision where I thought I won. I lost the decision but they told me that if I fought like that and lost a bunch of times, I would always have a job. Then I got fired and I took fights against guys that I didn’t want to fight, so now I’m just going to be more selective. I’m not going to any favors and I’m not taking any short notice fights unless it’s a matchup that I want. I’m only going to fight exciting fights or top level guys. I’ve never turned down a fight before and I always thought I’d fight anybody. But those days are over, I’m getting older and I need to make smarter decisions. I’ve gotta do what’s right for me and that’s where I’m at right now. I’m only looking for super exciting fights or top level guys so I can get a couple of wins and get right back in there against Demetrious Johnson. It’s what I want and I feel like I deserve it. I want to get right back to where I need to be.”
Tim Elliott then explained how he’d approach a rematch with Mighty Mouse.
“I would for sure bring a nutritionist out with me this time. I didn’t bring my nutritionist and like I said, my weight was good when I got to Vegas but it’s hard to monitor the sodium and other stuff you’re putting into your body when you’re eating out. If I had my nutritionist making my meals all week I definitely think that would have helped. I don’t want to blame my loss on the weight cut but he didn’t beat me up. He didn’t hurt me, didn’t rock me and he never came close to submitting me, but he outpointed me. I don’t want to take anything away from him but I can make adjustments and fix the things that I need to fix to beat him. I don’t think he can make the right adjustments to handle me. He’s as good as he’s going to get, he’s hit his peak. I’m just now getting there, I’m just now learning how to throw a punch right. I’m just now learning how to throw a kick right. I’m still green in the gym. I got into the UFC the first time and I didn’t even know how to throw a punch. I had no idea what I was doing. So I’m getting faster and stronger every day. I feel like it’s the opposite for him, I feel like he’s on his downslope and I’m on my way up.”
Do you think Tim Elliott could beat Mighty Mouse in a rematch? Sound off, PENN Nation!
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 2/8/2017.