UFC 168: What We Learned from Michael Johnson vs. Gleison Tibau

Riley KontekFeatured ColumnistDecember 28, 2013

USA Today

In an under-the-radar lightweight bout, Gleison Tibau and Michael Johnson met in a jam-packed UFC 168 Octagon. With not a lot of press, a great finish was the result of a close bout on paper.

Johnson was able to score a quick second-round knockout, coming off the stool and getting right to work in the round. It was a great finish that saw Johnson hit the kill shot and move in for the "for-sure" finish strikes.

So, what did we learn from this bout? Let's take a look. 


What We'll Remember About This Fight

The finish. Johnson has gone from an inconsistent The Ultimate Fighter veteran who had been switching between wins and losses to a guy who is looking to be a contender.

The finish was quick, violent and pretty. That's how most finishes should look in the sport of mixed martial arts. 


What We Learned About Johnson

He is for real. Johnson has gone from a guy who was struggling to put together consecutive wins to a guy who has dominated Joe Lauzon and finished the ultra-durable Tibau.

Johnson is arguably a top-20 fighter now. His skills have developed well, and his move to the Blackzilians camp has proved to be a great one. 


What We Learned About Tibau

He is the gatekeeper of 155 pounds. He is a nice guy and a well-rounded fighter, but he shows who is at the top end of the division and who is not.

The near 20-fight vet has failed to show an evolution in his recent bouts. He may be stuck in a plateau at this point. 


What's Next for Johnson

One has to assume Johnson is going to get a top-20 opponent. At this point, a bout with the winner of Melvin Guillard vs. Ross Pearson could serve as a good test for the young Johnson. 


What's Next for Tibau

Don't be too surprised if the UFC cuts him. He is a longtime vet who hasn't really moved too far lately. I would give him Danny Castillo in his next bout, as it could make or break him.