Henry Cejudo will face Demetrious Johnson tonight at UFC 227, and if he defeats the reigning flyweight king, ‘The Messenger” believes it will put him in a whole different stratosphere from the sport’s other stars.
Cejudo has been booked for a do-over with Johnson, after defeating Wilson Reis and Sergio Pettis. The 31 year-old faced Johnson back in 2016, and was quickly finished by the renowned star.
Well, tonight’s bout is going down at a time when Johnson is repeatedly mentioned in who is the best, pound-for-pound fighter discussions. In fact, Johnson’s name also gets cited now during greatest-of-all-time debates, since he’s defended the flyweight crown a record, 11 times.
So, what would it mean if Cejudo did in fact, end Johnson’s lengthy reign tonight? And he added the 125 title to a resume that also includes an Olympic Gold Medal in freestyle wrestling? Recently Cejudo was on “The MMA Hour“, and while discussing that subject, he said this (quote via MMA Fighting):
“It’d put me in the history books,” Cejudo said. “People will forget a two-division champ, because there’s already five so far, or six. People won’t forget an Olympic champion and a UFC champion until the next person does that, and that is one tough human being. Ultimately, I feel like it’d put me in a different category. I conquered two sports. I beat the pound-for-pound best fighter in the world. Like, there’s no denying this kid’s the truth.”
It’s an interesting point. There’s no question that if Cejudo defeats Johnson tonight, his stock is going to go through the roof, and he’ll be chartering pretty unique territory, in terms of his athletic accomplishments.
But, will people forget two-division champs? That likely depends on how common of an occurrence it becomes. Now, if Cejudo could win the flyweight title, and then say go on to capture the bantamweight belt as well, then he could also enter the G.O.A.T debate.
First things first, however, and that’s getting by Johnson. That’s something only Dominick Cruz and Brad Pickett have done, and that was back in 2011 and 2010 respectively, and in a different weight class.
UFC 227 will take place in Los Angeles, California.