Former UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson says he wouldn’t be sad if the UFC shut down the promotion’s 125lbs weight class.
Johnson was the first-ever UFC flyweight champion and was the kingpin of the division from its beginning in 2012 until he lost his belt to Henry Cejudo in the summer of 2018. Just a few months after losing his belt to Cejudo, the UFC decided to trade Johnson to ONE Championship for Ben Askren, and Johnson has been a star for ONE ever since.
After Cejudo announced his decision to vacate the belt flyweight belt, the UFC set up a vacant title fight between Joseph Benavidez and Deiveson Figueiredo for UFC Norfolk. Everything looked to go according to plan until Figueiredo missed weight and he wasn’t eligible to win the belt. As fate would have it, Figueiredo knocked out Benavidez and now there is no champion at 125lbs.
There are now rumblings that the UFC could consider shutting down the flyweight division as the weight class has few stars and no champion. Speaking on the Ariel Helwani’s ESPN MMA Show, Johnson was asked if he would be upset to see the UFC flyweight division shut down. He says that no, he wouldn’t be.
Demetrious Johnson: "No, not at all!"
— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) March 2, 2020
On #HelwaniShow @arielhelwani : “Would you be sad it (the UFC) shut down the (flyweight) division? Demetrious Johnson: “No, not at all!”
It wasn’t long ago that the UFC was considering shutting down flyweight, but Cejudo beating Johnson gave the division a second wind. Now that Cejudo is competing at bantamweight and flyweight has no champion, there is a very real chance the division could be shut down once again. That won’t be good news to any of the fighters in the weight class, but the possibility exists that’s what happens.
Do you think the UFC will close down the flyweight division?