Anthony Johnson Crushes Alexander Gustafsson To Earn Title Shot

Published on January 26th, 2015 6:34 pm EST

This wasn't how it was supposed to go.

Alexander Gustafsson was supposed to hammer Anthony "Rumble" Johnson in front of 30,000 Swedish fans to earn himself a rematch against Jon "Bones" Jones. Gustafsson, who forfeited a second shot at the title when he had to pull out due to injury (Daniel Cormier eventually took the spot), was expected (at least according to the bookmakers) to cruise to victory over Johnson.

As we've often seen in the UFC, however, the best-laid plans often end up going awry. Anthony "Rumble" Johnson, who is currently enjoying an unbelievable career resurgence, destroyed Gustafsson and earned himself a shot at Jon Jones and the Light Heavyweight title.

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The path to a title shot has been an interesting one for Johnson. Johnson, if you'll remember, was essentially banished from the UFC after missing weight on a number of occasions. Johnson fought (and won) outside of the UFC, moving up in weight class so that he would no longer have so much trouble making weight. Johnson and the UFC eventually patched things up and Johnson was brought back to the promotion.

Since returning, Johnson has been unstoppable, battering the likes of Antonio Rogerio Nogueira and Alexander Gustafsson. There is nobody that is complaining about an Anthony Johnson/Jon Jones fight, as "Rumble" has certainly earned the shot.

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Jon Jones will certainly be the favorite when he fights Anthony Johnson later in the year. Jones, however, has probably not fought anyone with the one-punch KO power of Johnson, and that is what will make this an interesting fight. Johnson, as he showed against the notoriously tough to finish Gustafsson, can end a fight with just one punch.

It will be very interesting to see how Jones approaches this fight. Jones has often said that he likes to beat his opponent at his opponent's own game - so does that mean that Jones is going to try to flatten Johnson and knock him out? Or will he rely on his wrestling and clinch work to wear down Johnson?

This should be a fascinating fight - don't be surprised if "Rumble" and Jones square off this summer in Las Vegas.


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