Given that recent success in the cage, the flyweight titleholder likely isn’t missing the UFC. Years ago, Johnson was famously traded from the company to ONE Championship in favor of Ben Askren. ‘Funky’ would later go 1-2 in the UFC before retiring from MMA in 2020. Meanwhile, Johnson has had much greater fortunes in the Asia-based company.
Likely thanks to his success outside the UFC, Demetrious Johnson has decided to come out in support of Francis Ngannou. ‘The Predator’ famously left the promotion in January, as he felt the UFC’s contracts were too restrictive. At the time, Ngannou stated that a lack of health insurance, lack of ability to box, lengthy contracts, and more, led to his exit from the company.
Since his departure, many, including Dana White, have blasted the heavyweight for not quickly finding a combat sports home. On The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani, Johnson downplayed that talk and stated that there’s lots of money outside the UFC.
Demetrious Johnson discusses Francis Ngannou’s future
“I think it was great for Francis,” Demetrious Johnson stated on The MMA Hour. “… There’s many homes in MMA. I’ve been successful outside the UFC, look at Sergio Pettis, he’s in a great spot outside the UFC. Look at Anthony Pettis, he made what, seven hundred thousand dollars fighting Roy Jones Jr? I mean, there’s money outside the UFC ladies and gentlemen. There’s money outside the UFC.
He continued, “For Francis Ngannou, he’s at that spot where he gets to pick where he wants to go. He doesn’t want to be locked under a contract, but could you imagine if he fights a Tyson Fury and made like forty million dollars? He’s not going to make that in the UFC in one fight, maybe he could, I’m not sure. But that’s the type of money you can make in boxing… This is the perfect time to be a free agent if you have a big name.”