After three rounds of lightweight action, Michael Johnson (10-6) earned a unanimous decision victory over former WEC fighter Shane Roller (10-6) on the UFC on Fox 2 preliminary card.
Johnson improves to 3-2 in the UFC while Roller falls to 1-3 in his last four, which have all taken place inside the Octagon.
What we'll remember about this fight:
Johnson used his striking and takedown defense to win the first two rounds clearly. The third round featured the wildest action of the fight, as Roller got his opponent down and was warned for hitting Johnson to the back of the head by referee Herb Dean. With a break in the action, Dean let Roller obtain his dominant position with a body triangle.
A point-deduction may have be warranted after 10-15 strikes landed to the back of Johnson's head. If not a deduction, a stand-up could have been issued.
What we learned about Michael Johnson:
Roller came in as the favorite, but Johnson showed improvement in his takedown defense and was able to avoid any takedowns in the first two rounds. He was able to survive for the better part of four minutes in the fourth with Roller, a former NCAA Division I wrestler, on his back.
"That was a big key to victory," Johnson said in regards to his takedown defense in the post-fight interview.
What we learned about Shane Roller:
Roller didn't establish an attack till late in the fight, and it cost him the decision with the scores 29-28 across the board. It has been the case with many of Roller's UFC bouts, and it almost cost him in his only UFC victory as well.
What's next for Johnson:
A fight versus Fabricio Camoes, who was victorious on the first UFC on FX card, would serve as a decent opponent for Johnson's next fight.
What's next for Roller:
With only one victory in the UFC, Roller had to not only win this fight but do so in impressive fashion. With another loss on his record, he now might find himself getting cut from the UFC and its most stacked division.
If the UFC keeps him around, he will have to face someone who is also on a losing streak.