It was always a joke that Anthony Johnson competed at welterweight; having to cut over 40 pounds to make your limit isn’t healthy for your body or for fair competition. But in an ironic twist, making middleweight was even harder for Johnson than making 170. He failed miserably in two separate attempts, coming in at 197 pounds (!) for his final UFC fight against Vitor Belfort, and at 194.2 for a “catchweight” match against Dave Branch at Titan FC 22 that was originally scheduled as a middleweight contest.
Rather than risk further humiliation, AJ has decided to go up the ladder again, where he’ll compete even closer to his natural weight, whatever that may be. According to Titan Fighting Championships promoter Joe Kelly, “[Anthony Johnson] has stated that in his next fight, he wants to fight for us at 205 so that’s where the fight will be in July. We’ll see.”
Johnson’s next opponent hasn’t been named yet, but we’re going to be cautiously optimistic here. Johnson’s double-failure in cutting to middleweight was caused by two factors: 1) An ill-advised decision to add more muscle than he had at welterweight, and 2) the physical shutdown of his body during his cut. Surely he’s learned from those painful lessons, and there’s no way Johnson decides to stack on more mass for his new weight class, is there? (IS THERE??) And how long until Titan FC books Johnson vs. Arlovski at heavyweight?