With Anthony Johnson staking his claim for a light heavyweight title shot on Saturday night by knocking our Ryan Bader in less than 90 seconds, the question became — how long was he willing to wait for a title shot?
After putting away Bader Saturday night at UFC on FOX 18 in Newark, “Rumble” Johnson said he will be very patient if he was asked to be.
“I definitely have enough time to get ready for whoever they put in front of me now,” Johnson said at the post-fight presser at the Prudential Center. “Nothing happened to me this fight, I’m not injured, so I just keep going forward and see what happens.”
When asked if he was comfortable waiting out the timetable for the tentatively slated title fight between current 205-pound champion Daniel Cormier and Jon Jones in April, Johnson said he was.
“Yup, yup, that’s the biggest fight of my life, so if they wanted to make me wait that long, I’d definitely do it,” he said. “It gives me plenty of time to get ready for whoever.”
Johnson (21-5) lost to Cormier at UFC 187 via third-round submission (rear-naked choke), yet has never faced Jones, whom he was supposed to face at that very card. The fight remains an intriguing one, yet so does a rematch with Cormier after Johnson has rattled off back-to-back wins over Jimi Manuwa and Bader.
Yet even though he said he was happy to wait, Johnson made it clear he was willing to fight again before a title shot if he was asked.
“Yeah, as a paycheck,” he said.
Johnson said he was willing to hold tight for now, but not that he would wait the time line no matter what.
“I didn’t say no matter what, because if somebody gets hurt and they need a replacement I’d definitely [be ready] if I’m healthy and ready to fight,” he said. “That’s for light heavyweight and heavyweight.”