At UFC 155 Saturday night in Las Vegas, lightweight Myles Jury scored a substantial upset when he defeated Michael Johnson in a unanimous decision.
Johnson (12-7, 4-3 UFC) appeared to tire as Jury continuously took him to the mat and pounded him. Throughout all three rounds, he displayed little in the way of takedown defense or grappling prowess. It was a grueling end to a grueling year for "The Menace," who fought four times in 2012, amassing a 3-1 record during that time.
The loss to Jury (and the fact that Johnson seemed to not only tire, but lose the will to compete) was a frustrating punctuation mark on the year for Johnson, who still remains a viable commodity in the UFC.
So what should the next step be for the former Ultimate Fighter runner-up? First, Johnson should work on his takedown defense. Then, he should fight Melvin Guillard.
Like Johnson, Guillard isn't the world's slickest grappler (the two have 14 submission losses between them). Like Johnson, Guillard prefers to knock people out. And like Johnson, Guillard lost his fight at UFC 155.
An exciting and popular veteran of the sport, Guillard is currently embroiled in the worst stretch of his fighting career, having lost four of his last five. He'll be hungry in his next one. After Saturday night, so will Johnson.
It's entirely understandable that the loser between them should question his future in the UFC (or have it questioned for him). The winner would cement his viability in the deep lightweight division—without having to waste time thinking about any of that pesky ground stuff.
Either way, fans would come out on top. There's no way a fight between those two would be dull.
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