Michael Johnson (fighter)
|Born||Michael Julian Johnson
June 4, 1986
St. Louis, Missouri, United States
|Other names||The Menace|
|Height||5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)|
|Weight||156 lb (71 kg; 11.1 st)|
|Reach||73.5 in (187 cm)|
|Fighting out of||Lantana, Florida, United States|
|Mixed martial arts record|
|Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog|
Michael Julian Johnson (born June 4, 1986) is an American mixed martial artist who competes in the lightweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. A professional MMA competitor since 2008, Johnson mostly competed in his regional circuit, before signing onto the Ultimate Fighting Championship to appear on The Ultimate Fighter: Team GSP vs. Team Koscheck. As of July 2017, he is #9 in the official UFC lightweight rankings.
Born in St. Louis, Missouri, Johnson was raised as the youngest of three siblings. Johnson began fighting at the age of 10, after his father's fatal heart attack. The incident made Johnson want to exert his anger physically. Johnson later said, "I lost something, a huge part of me....Fighting was my way of not dealing with my dad's passing. Now that I think of it, of course, it was the wrong thing to do, especially putting all that burden on my mom having to deal with it." Athletic, Johnson was a three-sport varsity athlete at Marquette High School in Chesterfield, Missouri. Johnson later received a full scholarship to play football at Central Methodist University, but transferred after one year to Meramec Community College where he was one of the top NJCAA wrestlers in the country.
Mixed martial arts career
Johnson is a former Midwest Fight League and Xtreme Cage Fighting Champion who won those titles in July 2008 and October 2009 respectively.
The Ultimate Fighter
Johnson's entry onto the show was, in part, due to his persistence in attending tryouts for the show. After making the final interview round of The Ultimate Fighter: Team Nogueira vs. Team Mir, Johnson was told that he wasn't the right fit for the show. Johnson then tried out for the ninth season of the show, before finally becoming accepted onto the twelfth season after telling the producers, "I've been getting tired of chasing you [expletive] around the country. I'm here; I'm not going to go anywhere. If you guys don't pick me, I'm going to try out again." Finally, Johnson was signed.
In the second episode, both St-Pierre and Koscheck had Johnson at the top of their lists when it came time to select fighters. During the team selection process however, St-Pierre created a fake list which did not have Johnson among his top selections, and subtly showed it to Koscheck to fool him into believing it. This seemed to manipulate Koscheck into picking Marc Stevens, as he may have believed he could take Johnson later. This allowed St-Pierre to choose Johnson with the second overall pick.
Johnson competed in his preliminary round matchup against Aaron Wilkinson in the third episode. After some early striking exchanges in the first round, Wilkinson was able to take Johnson down and utilise ground-and-pound punches and elbows. In the second round, Johnson landed an early superman punch, as well as a takedown. After takedowns were achieved by both men, Johnson stuffed a final attempt and took the second round on the judges scorecards. In the sudden victory round, Johnson attacked quickly, which allowed him to end the fight via a rear naked choke.
In episode 8, Team GSP had to pick which team members would fight each other (considering they had 5 members in the quarter-finals). St. Pierre asked each member to pick the fighter they wanted to fight. Johnson and Alex Caceres picked each other and a fight was scheduled. Johnson won by unanimous decision after two rounds, earning himself a spot in the semi-finals.
In the final round, Johnson faced the one remaining Team Koscheck member, Nam Phan. In a back-and-forth fight, Johnson scored takedowns. The consensus after the fight was that Johnson won the opening round, and Phan the second. The third was in dispute however, with each fighter's coach convinced they had won the round. Johnson was declared the winner via split decision.
Ultimate Fighting Championship
Johnson made his UFC debut in The Ultimate Fighter: Team GSP vs. Team Koscheck Finale against Jonathan Brookins. That fight determined the winner of The Ultimate Fighter 12. After an impressive first round, Johnson lost rounds two and three — and subsequently the fight — via unanimous decision, leaving him the runner-up.
Johnson was looking to take a fight outside of the UFC before returning to the promotion. The fight was to headline the North American Fighting Championship card against Jim Bleau. However, after obtaining a UFC fight, Johnson pulled out of the NAFC bout to focus his training on the UFC bout. Johnson faced Edward Faaloloto on June 26, 2011 at UFC on Versus 4 and won the fight via TKO in the first round.
Johnson was expected to face Cody McKenzie on January 28, 2012 at UFC on Fox 2. However, McKenzie was forced out of the bout with an injury and replaced by Shane Roller. Johnson defeated Roller by unanimous decision, with all three judges scoring the bout 29-28.
Johnson was expected to face Danny Castillo on September 1, 2012 at UFC 151. However, after UFC 151 was cancelled, Johnson/Castillo was rescheduled and took place on October 5, 2012 at UFC on FX 5. After almost being finished in the first round, Johnson survived and came back to win via KO at 1:06 into the second round. Johnson was awarded Knockout of the Night honors for his performance.
Johnson faced Reza Madadi on April 6, 2013 at UFC on Fuel TV 9. Despite almost finishing Madadi with a head kick in the first round, he eventually succumbed to the wrestling of Madadi and lost the fight via submission in the third round.
Johnson was expected to face Josh Thomson on July 26, 2014 at UFC on Fox 12. However, on July 11, the UFC announced he had been pulled from the bout. It was later revealed that Johnson was pulled from the bout and would not compete during the remainder of 2014 following his arrest regarding a domestic dispute in Palm Beach County, Florida in April 2014.
A bout with Benson Henderson was initially linked as the event headliner for The Ultimate Fighter 21 Finale on July 12, 2015. Although never officially announced by the UFC, the bout between Henderson and Johnson will not take place at this event.
Johnson faced Beneil Dariush on August 8, 2015 at UFC Fight Night 73. He lost the fight by split decision. Every mainstream MMA media outlet polled by MMA Decisions scored the fight as decision victory for Johnson.
Johnson faced Dustin Poirier on September 17, 2016 at UFC Fight Night 94. He won the fight via knockout early in the first round with a sharp two-punch combination followed by ground and pound.
Johnson faced former World Series of Fighting champion Justin Gaethje on July 7, 2017 in the main event at The Ultimate Fighter 25 Finale. Despite rocking Gaethje twice with punches, Johnson was unable to capitalize and lost the fight via TKO due to a combination of punches and knees in the second round. The fight earned Johnson his second Fight of the Night bonus award.
Championships and accomplishments
- Ultimate Fighting Championship
- Xtreme Cage Fighting
- XCF Lightweight Championship (One time)
- Midwest Fight League
- MFL Lightweight Championship (One time)
Mixed martial arts record
|Professional record breakdown|
|29 matches||17 wins||12 losses|
|Loss||17–12||Justin Gaethje||TKO (punches and knees)||The Ultimate Fighter: Redemption Finale||July 7, 2017||2||4:48||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Fight of the Night.|
|Loss||17–11||Khabib Nurmagomedov||Submission (kimura)||UFC 205||November 12, 2016||3||2:31||New York City, New York, United States|
|Win||17–10||Dustin Poirier||KO (punches)||UFC Fight Night: Poirier vs. Johnson||September 17, 2016||1||1:35||Hidalgo, Texas, United States||Performance of the Night.|
|Loss||16–10||Nate Diaz||Decision (unanimous)||UFC on Fox: dos Anjos vs. Cerrone 2||December 19, 2015||3||5:00||Orlando, Florida, United States||Fight of the Night.|
|Loss||16–9||Beneil Dariush||Decision (split)||UFC Fight Night: Teixeira vs. Saint Preux||August 8, 2015||3||5:00||Nashville, Tennessee, United States|
|Win||16–8||Edson Barboza||Decision (unanimous)||UFC Fight Night: Bigfoot vs. Mir||February 22, 2015||3||5:00||Porto Alegre, Brazil|
|Win||15–8||Melvin Guillard||Decision (unanimous)||UFC Fight Night: Gustafsson vs. Manuwa||March 8, 2014||3||5:00||London, England|
|Win||14–8||Gleison Tibau||KO (punches)||UFC 168||December 28, 2013||2||1:32||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||13–8||Joe Lauzon||Decision (unanimous)||UFC Fight Night: Shogun vs. Sonnen||August 17, 2013||3||5:00||Boston, Massachusetts, United States|
|Loss||12–8||Reza Madadi||Submission (D'Arce choke)||UFC on Fuel TV: Mousasi vs. Latifi||April 6, 2013||3||1:33||Stockholm, Sweden|
|Loss||12–7||Myles Jury||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 155||December 29, 2012||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||12–6||Danny Castillo||KO (punches)||UFC on FX: Browne vs. Bigfoot||October 5, 2012||2||1:06||Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States||Knockout of the Night.|
|Win||11–6||Tony Ferguson||Decision (unanimous)||UFC on Fox: Diaz vs. Miller||May 5, 2012||3||5:00||East Rutherford, New Jersey, United States|
|Win||10–6||Shane Roller||Decision (unanimous)||UFC on Fox: Evans vs. Davis||January 28, 2012||3||5:00||Chicago, Illinois, United States|
|Loss||9–6||Paul Sass||Submission (inverted heel hook)||UFC Live: Cruz vs. Johnson||October 1, 2011||1||3:00||Washington, D.C., United States|
|Win||9–5||Edward Faaloloto||TKO (punches)||UFC Live: Kongo vs. Barry||June 26, 2011||1||4:42||Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States|
|Loss||8–5||Jonathan Brookins||Decision (unanimous)||The Ultimate Fighter: Team GSP vs. Team Koscheck Finale||December 4, 2010||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Lost The Ultimate Fighter 12 Lightweight Tournament.|
|Win||8–4||Chris McDaniel||TKO (punches)||FM: Productions||January 30, 2010||1||4:34||Springfield, Missouri, United States|
|Win||7–4||Ramiro Hernandez||Decision (unanimous)||Titan Fighting Championship 15||December 18, 2009||3||5:00||Kansas City, Kansas, United States||Catchweight (150 lbs) bout.|
|Win||6–4||Aaron Derrow||TKO (punches)||Xtreme Cage Fighter 10||October 3, 2009||1||0:43||Springfield, Missouri, United States||Won the XCF Lightweight Championship.|
|Loss||5–4||Eric Marriott||Submission (heel hook)||FM: Productions||May 9, 2009||2||1:32||Springfield, Missouri, United States|
|Win||5–3||Clay French||Submission (kimura)||Fuel Fight Club||April 10, 2009||1||3:16||Lake Ozark, Missouri, United States|
|Loss||4–3||Joe Brammer||Submission (guillotine choke)||Midwest Cage Championships 19||March 14, 2009||4||3:45||Des Moines, Iowa, United States|
|Loss||4–2||James Krause||Submission (triangle choke)||FM: Productions||November 22, 2008||1||2:55||Springfield, Missouri, United States|
|Win||4–1||Warren Stewart||TKO (punches)||FM: Productions||September 13, 2008||1||2:37||Springfield, Missouri, United States|
|Win||3–1||Lucas Gwaltney||Decision (majority)||Midwest Fight League||July 25, 2008||3||5:00||Columbia, Missouri, United States||Won the MFL Lightweight Championship|
|Loss||2–1||Ted Worthington||Submission (triangle choke)||MCC 13: Contenders||April 25, 2008||3||1:29||Urbandale, Iowa, United States|
|Win||2–0||Steve Schneider||Submission (choke)||FM: Productions||April 18, 2008||1||2:12||Springfield, Missouri, United States|
|Win||1–0||Chauncey Prather||TKO (punches)||FM: Productions||February 1, 2008||1||1:12||Springfield, Missouri, United States|
Mixed martial arts exhibition record
|Exhibition record breakdown|
|4 matches||4 wins||0 losses|
|Win||4–0||Nam Phan||Decision (split)||The Ultimate Fighter: Team GSP vs. Team Koscheck||December 1, 2010 (airdate)||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Semi-finals.|
|Win||3–0||Alex Caceres||Decision (unanimous)||The Ultimate Fighter: Team GSP vs. Team Koscheck||November 17, 2010 (airdate)||2||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Quarter-finals.|
|Win||2–0||Aaron Wilkinson||Submission (rear-naked choke)||The Ultimate Fighter: Team GSP vs. Team Koscheck||September 29, 2010 (airdate)||3||0:37||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Preliminary bout.|
|Win||1–0||Pablo Garza||Decision (unanimous)||The Ultimate Fighter: Team GSP vs. Team Koscheck||September 15, 2010 (airdate)||2||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||TUF house entry bout.|
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