The UFC has had only one flyweight champion in the promotions history -- “Mighty Mouse” Demetrious Johnson. Johnson, who has already defended his championship a grand total of nine times, is now declaring himself the top pound for pound fighter in the world.
Many pundits agree with him, even according to the official UFC rankings. After years of saying he didn't care, Johnson is openly confessing his thoughts about his place in the pound-for-pound line.
“You know what, I believe so — I think I am,” Johnson said on The MMA Hour. “I think going out there and showing everything in my last fight [against Elliott]. I showed I had a good clinch. [And I] TKO’d Henry Cejudo — Joseph Benavidez just went three rounds with him even though it was an improved Henry Cejudo. But, those guys never really took the fight to different place. Those guys didn’t really fight in the clinch, or use the wrestling aspect, or the grappling.”
Johnson has only suffered a single defeat under the UFC banner and that loss came to current UFC Bantamweight Champion Dominick Cruz, who defeated him in a title defense at UFC On Versus 6.
“I think because that [Cruz fight] happened, what, five years ago?” he said. “You know, I don’t know, but I think for me when you see the overall pound-for-pound…if I was the same size as Cruz, or the same size as [Jon] Jones, weight-wise, everything is identically the same, I would think that I would be able to beat them, showing what I’ve been able to do in the Octagon. I’ve knocked people out from the clinch. I’ve submitted people from armbars, Kimura, last-second armbars. I’ve knocked people out with one-hand punch.”
Johnson’s last fight saw him successfully defend his flyweight title against Tim Elliott, that fight happened at the UFC Ultimate Fighter 24 Finale.