Jon Jones, Anthony Johnson is coming.
Johnson needed all of 2:15 to finish the #1 challenger and the biggest threat to the light-heavyweight title, Alexander Gustafsson – in front of 26,000 Swedish fans.
And now, Jones vs Johnson is the most interesting fight of the year.
Welcome back to The Crossfire.
Performances-of-the-Night went to Johnson, Kenny Robertson, Gegard Mousasi, and Makwan Amirkhan, for his 8-second win. It was the fifth-fastest win in UFC history. All fighters received a $50,000 USD bonus.
“We always train for that kick, ” Johnson said on the UFC on FOX post-fight show. “He hit me with a few punches and once he threw a kick, I knew he was in my range.
“The same way I took Gus out, I’ll knock him [Jones] out. I’m going to do my best to take his head off.”
“Jon, keep your hands up, because if you don’t, it’s lights out.” – Anthony Johnson
Gustafsson was classy in defeat, acknowledging Johnson outclassed him. “It doesn’t feel good at all. It’s very tough. He put a lot of pressure on me, but I thought I had everything under control. He threw a good counter and he caught me.”
“Johnson caught me. I wasn’t there. I felt like I was in deep water. I’ll take a few days off to recover and then get back in the gym and learn from my mistakes.”
MMA Crossfire Expert Cassie Wiseman checks in with her main card thoughts:
AKIRA CORASSINI VS SAM SICILIA
WISEMAN PREDICTION: SAM SICILIA VIA SUBMISSION
WINNER: SAM SICILIA VIA FIRST ROUND TKO 3:26
WISEMAN: I knew Corassani would want to keep things standing, as he tends to just want to bang. Sicilia came out with aggression and confidence though and instead of taking things to the mat he met Corassani in the center and just let it go. The problem for Corassani is that his chin wasn’t up to the Sicilia-test. The superior striking, counter-striking, and combinations of Sicilia really was too much for Corassani and Sicilia secured the KO finish in the first round. Corassani needs to mix up his combinations and movement more. He has all the tools, but just not putting things together yet. Sicilia showed his usual bulldog aggression. Entertaining fight.
#5 MR. WONDERFUL” PHIL DAVIS VS RYAN “DARTH” BADER
WISEMAN PREDICTION: PHIL DAVIS VIA SUBMISSION
WINNER: RYAN BADER VIA SPLIT DECISION (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
WISEMAN: Well, the good news is that it wasn’t the lay-and-pray grind like I expected. Bader wanted no part of the wrestling aspect, he just wanted to show his standup game. Davis threw in a load of attempts to bring things to the mat, but Bader is good at defending a takedown. I’ll give him that much credit. The problem is that I don’t see much evolution from either. Bader has always had an awkwardly narrow stance. Davis has always mixed up his long jab for a takedown set up or grinding match. The fight could have gone either way, but Bader pulled it off. Neither showed anything that will threaten Jon Jones.
DAN “HENDO” HENDERSON VS #8 GEGARD MOUSASI
WISEMAN PREDICTION: GEGARD MOUSASI VIA UNANIMOUS DECISION
WINNER: GEGARD MOUSASI VIA TKO
WISEMAN: The inconsistent reffing is ridiculous. One ref will allow a fighter to be knocked out and take unnecessary damage, while another will jump in far too quickly. When we look at the Maynard vs. Edgar battles, they were both rocked at different times, but the ref waited and let them fight. If that ref were the third man inside the cage tonight the fight would still be going. A horrible stoppage by the ref. Mousasi gets the win, but just a terrible stoppage.
#1 ALEXANDER “THE MAULER” GUSTAFSSON VS #3 ANTHONY “RUMBLE” JOHNSON
WISEMAN PREDICTION: ANTHONY JOHNSON VIA TKO
WINNER: ANTHONY JOHNSON VIA TKO
WISEMAN: Johnson how incredible power! Gus has been hit by some massive guys, but Rumble has power like no one else in the division. The cardio and aggression when he smells blood. Wow! An impressive win over a dangerous guy. Johnson showed tonight that he certainly needs to be taken seriously by Mr. Bones because he’s coming.