Following his impressive first round head kick KO victory over Charlie Brenneman at UFC on Versus 6 the Anthony "Rumble" Johnson hype train is starting to pick up steam once again.
Johnson is an enormous welterweight whose athleticism can be matched by few but he still has a long way to go before we start looking at him as a real threat to Georges St. Pierre's UFC welterweight title.
While Johnson's sheer size and natural ability would surely give St. Pierre fits, Johnson is just not at that level yet. He is a great prospect and the tools are there but he needs to really put the work in to take that next step.
Johnson has been an impressive prospect since making his UFC debut at UFC Fight Night 10 in 2007 but he has yet to show he can compete with the best the UFC welterweight division has to offer.
A good wrestler in his own right, Johnson was dominated by perennial welterweight contender Josh Koscheck in the wrestling department and St. Pierre is a much better functional wrestler than Koscheck.
If Johnson ever hopes to compete with St. Pierre, he is going to need to learn how to use that huge frame and explosive athleticism to not only stuff takedown attempts but to punish his opponents when they try to take him to the mat.
On the feet Johnson's length and power make him a destructive force but he does have a tendency to get a little wild, leaving himself open and off balance. Against a fighter the caliber of St. Pierre those openings will result in losing the fight.
Johnson has all of the natural tools a fighter would need to end the welterweight title reign of St. Pierre but he needs to continue to refine his skills and mature as a fighter. If he can do that he could develop into the biggest threat St. Pierre has in the welterweight division.
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