During the UFC Fight Night 73 broadcast it certainly seemed like Michael Johnson was about to be handed his fifth straight victory, until jaws were dropped collectively, when the judge’s scorecards were read out…Two of the three judges handed the bout to Beneil Dariush, and in doing so, sparked outcry throughout the MMA world.
Recently Johnson appeared on “The MMA Road Show” podcast with John Morgan, and of course, “The Menace” was asked to weigh-in on what went down. Here is some of what the 29 year-old, lightweight contender had to say (quote via MMA Junkie.com):
“All my plans just got set back because of judges that don’t have knowledge of the sport,” Johnson said. “We should feel comfortable in knowing these judges will get it right. Nothing went on with these judges lives. My life just took a 180, and I just lost my four-winning streak. I just lost a little bit of momentum, and now I’ve got to play a little bit of catch-up and hope the UFC makes the right decision.
“I’d fight next week if I need to. Remember, I only got half of my money that I was supposed to. That’s a big concern, as well, for me right now. I’m still in shape. I can turn around and fight next week. I just need to fight and get back in there and show people that I’m a threat in this division, and I shouldn’t be getting robbed like that.”
Now sure, Dariush supporters might believe their guy actually won. Others will point out it wasn’t like Johnson battered the rising fighter around the cage for 15 minutes, as Dariush did have a strong third round, but most folks had the latter losing that fight. Due to bad judging, Johnson is out a sizeable chunk of cash and had his winning streak snapped as he noted.
But, one would think the UFC brass knows the real deal here, and chances are Johnson will be booked to fight a top contender next. Johnson is currently ranked #5 in the UFC’s 155 division, so if he take out a top five guy in the coming months, a title shot won’t be far out.
Heading into UFC FN 73, Johnson was coming off wins over Gleison Tibau, Joe Lauzon, Melvin Guillard and Edson Barboza.