Dodson vs. Johnson: Breaking Down the FightMetric Numbers

Dan Hiergesell@DHiergesellFeatured ColumnistJanuary 27, 2013

Dodson vs. Johnson: Breaking Down the FightMetric Numbers

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    UFC on FOX 6 featured one of the most entertaining, fast-paced quarrels in recent UFC memory.

    The flyweight title fight between champion Demetrious "Mighty Mouse" Johnson and John "The Magician" Dodson nearly broke the speed of light.

    The bout ultimately featured two of the fastest guys in the sport throwing down for five straight rounds.  From the devastating power shots landed at the hands of Dodson to the bloody clinch game displayed by the champ, UFC on FOX fans were sent home happy.

    Here's how the main event breaks down under the always-useful FightMetrics report card.


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    John Dodson may have had the only knockdown of the fight, but his striking was simply inferior to the much quicker and more technically sound Demetrious Johnson.

    The bottom line is that Johnson's crisp and elusive boxing helped him land 181 total strikes (127 significant) compared to Dodson's 71 (57 significant). 

    What's even more alarming is that Johnson did most of his damage in the later rounds, showcasing elite conditioning and the will to retain his title.

    Compared to the 152 strikes Johnson threw in the first three rounds, he threw 151 strikes over the final 10 minutes.  That's only one less strike in one less round during the championship minutes.  A true testament to his world-class cardio.

    Johnson's ability to throw and land strikes in rounds four and five were made a little easier considering Dodson didn't do much at all.  Dodson landed just 28 total strikes over the final two frames and only attempted one power punch to the head in the last five minutes.


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    Demetrious Johnson was once again a far superior grappler against an unsuspecting flyweight title contender.

    It was slightly difficult for Johnson to take the stronger Dodson down throughout the fight—he secured only five takedowns at a below-average 33 percent—but he was able to ultimately win the fight by utilizing an outstanding clinch game.

    Johnson ended up landing one takedown per round.

    Evidenced by his 14 power shots landed to Dodson's body in the fifth round, Johnson's clinch was borderline perfect.  He was able to take time off the clock and keep Dodson from taking him down, which he did only once out of four attempts.

    In any case, grappling was not an issue for Johnson.  He wasn't able to transition when he took Dodson down the one time, as well as laying an illegal knee to the challenger's eye in the fourth round, but his ability to get in close and do damage retained him his title.

    Honestly, this fight was figured to feature more ground and pound than it actually did.  Not much went down on the canvas.

Total Performance Rating

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    Demetrious Johnson TPR: 65 (427 points)

    John Dodson TPR: 36 (270 points)

    Even though Johnson was fairly tentative in the first few rounds, mostly because of Dodson's one-punch power, he was extremely effective in the later rounds when Dodson grew weary.

    It's important to understand that Johnson was rocked not once, not twice, but three times throughout the fight.  Dodson's power was truly on display, but he was unable to finish which in turn ran his gas tank dry.

    By following the FightMetrics breakdown, it's easy to see where and how Johnson wins most of his bouts.  He does what he needs to in the beginning of fights to withstand his opponent's best shots, and then he pounces on them with punches in bunches over the final few frames, which helps soften them up for takedowns and punishing clinch work.

    It's an elite game plan that should result in more title defenses for "Mighty Mouse" in 2013.

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