John Dodson has his sights set on winning a UFC title in 2015, and The Magician doesn't particularly care which division it comes in.
Even though the 30-year-old knockout artist is a former title challenger and perennial contender in the flyweight fold, the Albuquerque, New Mexico-based slugger isn't limiting his scope from taking aim at the bantamweight crown as well. Dodson gave 125-pound champion Demetrious Johnson his toughest test to date when the two squared off back in January of 2013 and already holds a victory over current bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw when he scored a TKO finish over the Team Alpha Male standout to become The Ultimate Fighter Season 14 winner back in 2011.
The way Dodson sees it, those circumstances give him options, and he's willing to explore either road depending on which of the two gets him to a title shot the quickest.
He was the No. 1 contender in the flyweight division before a torn ACL put him on the sidelines, and if Mighty Mouse doesn't want to step back into the Octagon with him, the 125-pound powerhouse has no issues with jumping up a weight class to take a shot at championship gold.
He simply wants to fight for a title, and whether that opportunity comes against Johnson or Dillashaw makes zero difference to him.
"I'm coming back in 2015, and I'm trying to get whatever gold is available to get at that time," Dodson told Bleacher Report. "I'll take it from D.J. or T.J. It really doesn't matter to me. I don't think there is anyone in the flyweight division that is trying to fight me when I come back because they know the type of destructive power I bring."
As for his return from the knee injury that knocked him out of action this summer, Dodson is taking the correct approach to ensure everything heals properly. While he wants nothing more than to fly back into action and resume his quest for a UFC championship, he's also a savvy veteran of the game who understands how important it is to allow things to heal the right way.
That doesn't mean he's at peace with it all, but Dodson is positive that once his body is at 100 percent, there will be no one who can stop him from becoming champion when he resumes that particular quest in early 2015.
"It sucks, man, but this is what I have to do," Dodson said in regard to his recovery. "I am a very patient man, but it sucks being bored. Doing all the physical therapy and not going hard in training is tough because I want to get back out there. That said, I want to make sure I come back stronger than ever, and that means I have to do things the right way at the right pace. It's tough, but I'm making progress and making sure I can come back at full force when I return."
Duane Finley is a featured columnist for Bleacher Report. All quotes are obtained firsthand unless noted otherwise.