Mighty Mouse eyes all-time title defence record

Long time Flyweight champion Demetrious ‘Mighty Mouse’ Johnson had to push through some early adversity in his 9th straight defence against ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ winner Tim Elliot, but in the end he made it look easy. He is now one win behind Anderson Silva, who holds the all-time record with ten straight defences in the middleweight division.

The crazy thing about Mighty Mouse’s reign over the flyweight division is that it has been so dominant, that any negative situation in one of his fights and the media goes nuts with the word ‘adversity’ (myself included), because we’re so used to seeing him waltz through his fights barely taking a hit, while taking the fight wherever he feels like.

So in last night’s first round, we were all a little surprised to see Tim Elliott do pretty well against the long time champ. Elliott is the bigger man and is a physical bully who usually uses his wrestling pedigree to dominate opponents. He can strike too, and he comes in with a wild, aggressive style, throwing looping punches and unorthodox kicks. It’s because he doesn’t respect most of his opponents’ wrestling that he can throw with such reckless and, frankly, odd-looking abandon.

It was no different against Mighty Mouse in the first round. Elliott seemed to have the champ a little rattled after landing a few different shots and securing a takedown too. Watching Mighty Mouse get taken down felt…unnatural. Like the proper order of things was being messed with. On the feet, Mighty Mouse had been outstruck too, as he tried to figure out Elliott’s range.

So, 10-9 to Elliott for sure. However, on the ground, Elliott had spent a good amount of time trying to finish the champ with a choke, and Mighty Mouse’s corner were pretty certain that Elliott’s arms now had to be at least a little gassed. The choke was never that close, but seeing any submission attempt on Mighty Mouse is a genuine surprise.

We weren’t in for a close fight after all, though, or even really a ‘back-and-forth’ fight. Elliott was visibly tired from the first round, and although he found numerous second winds during the 5-rounder, he never looked the same as he had in the first. 

The roles were reversed in wrestling, with Mighty Mouse establishing his more expected dominance, and when the fight ended the champ had racked up around 20 minutes total of top control. This was a grapple-fest, and unfortunately for Tim Elliott, he’s no Demian Maia.

Mighty Mouse will almost certainly tie Anderson Silva’s record when he next fights. There’s absolutely no-one who can compete with him. Perhaps if Dominick Cruz fancies going on an extreme diet, we could have a real fight, but that’s not going to happen. 

In the co-main event, The Ultimate Fighter coaches squared off, with Joseph Benavidez (the #1 contender) decisioning Henry Cejudo (the #2 contender). So Benavidez should get the next title shot, right? Well, Mighty Mouse has already beaten him twice, and Cejudo once. But there’s not much else the UFC can do, so perhaps the third time’s a charm.

Tim Elliott, meanwhile, was smiling ear to ear most of the night, even after the loss. He wasn’t expected to win, but he’s back in the big time. He initially went 2-3 in the UFC, before becoming the Titan FC champ, and then winning The Ultimate Fighter show to secure his shot at the champ. 

He didn’t pull off a ‘Rocky’ style underdog win, but he’s made sure that his future paydays will resemble that of the UFC, instead of the regional circuit.

Laurie Williams

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