Demetrious Johnson seeks counsel from fellow UFC legends on difficult retirement decision

Demetrious Johnson is seeking retirement advice from some of the sport's Hall-of-Famers.

By: Milan Ordoñez | 3 weeks ago
Demetrious Johnson seeks counsel from fellow UFC legends on difficult retirement decision

Ahead of his ONE Championship flyweight title defense on Friday, Demetrious Johnson was looking at the possibility of retirement. But after defeating Adriano Moraes in their trilogy at ONE Fight Night 10, the 36-year-old “Mighty Mouse” entertained the possibility to fight on. 

Johnson intends to mull things over to come up with a more definitive decision. And he plans to seek the advice of some of the sport’s Hall of Famers who’ve already called it a career. 

Demetrious Johnson wants advice from Hall of Famers

There remains to be some uncertainty with Demetrious Johnson’s next career move. And to help him finalize things, he plans to consult some of the sport’s biggest names. 

“Talking to my peers, talking to Urijah Faber – I’m going to reach out to [Georges St-Pierre], I’m going to reach out to Khabib Nurmagomedov. I’m going to talk to these guys. I’m like, ‘Why did you guys stop?’” he told reporters during the post-fight presser (quotes by MMA Fighting). 

“Those guys could have kept on fighting, and there comes a point in time – I’m 36 years old, and do I just keep on doing this and giving other athletes the opportunity to beat me and add to their legacy? There’s a lot of stuff I’ve got to muster up.”

‘Mighty Mouse’ explains retirement talk

Demetrious Johnson isn’t as old as many of his veteran contemporaries who choose to fight on despite being way past their prime. But for him, some noticeable changes in terms of the mental aspect led him to give his career some thought. 

“The reason why I have these feelings, week four and week five was probably the hardest time in all my training camp. Like, back in the day when I would fight my world title fights, I remember when I was going to fight Wilson Reis, I would have nightmares that Wilson Reis would get my back,” he explained. 

“I didn’t have nightmares when I was getting ready to fight Adriano. I was having nightmares about what I do after I’m done fighting. And so I like to listen to my feelings and try to understand like, ‘OK, why am I having nightmares about what am I gonna do after fighting when I have an opponent to train for?’

Looking back on Demetrious Johnson’s career

‘Mighty Mouse’ has been regarded as an all-time great since his years of dominance in the UFC. After winning the inaugural flyweight belt at UFC 152 in 2012, he managed to defend and hold onto the title for the next five and a half years. 

Johnson lost the title to Henry Cejudo in 2018 and subsequently signed with ONE Championship that same year. At ONE, he continued his winning ways, compiling a 5-1 run with the Singapore-based promotion. His lone loss happened in 2021 via a grounded knee strike courtesy of Moraes. 

After ONE Fight Night 10, Johnson’s overall MMA record improved to 25-4-1. 

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About the author
Milan Ordoñez
Milan Ordoñez

Milan Ordoñez has been covering combat sports since 2012 and has been part of the Bloody Elbow staff since 2016. He’s also competed in amateur mixed martial arts and submission grappling tournaments.

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