Demetrious Johnson can soon move into a class all by himself.
“Mighty Mouse” will put his Ultimate Fighting Championship flyweight title on the line against Jackson-Wink MMA upstart Ray Borg in the UFC 215 main event this Saturday at Rogers Place in Edmonton, Alberta. A win over Borg would give Johnson his 11th consecutive successful title defense, passing Anderson Silva’s all-time record of 10 set between July 7, 2007 and July 7, 2012. The AMC Pankration cornerstone last appeared at UFC on Fox 24 in April, when he submitted longtime Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt Wilson Reis with an armbar in the third round of their encounter in Kansas City, Missouri. Johnson has not lost a fight in nearly six years.
As the reigning flyweight champion prepares for his latest test against Borg, here are five things you might not know about him:
1. He paid his dues.
“Mighty Mouse” spent the first three years of his professional MMA career plying his trade before sparse crowds on the regional circuit. He won his first 10 fights, eight of them finishes, while competing inside the AX Fighting Championships, USA Mixed Martial Arts, Genesis Fight Night, King of the Cage and Alaska Fighting Championship promotions.
2. Numbers help tell his story.
Johnson is a statistical marvel. Just spend some time on FightMetric. He ranks first all-time among Ultimate Fighting Championship flyweights in total fight time (3:50:57), significant strikes landed (914), strike differential (2.09), significant strike defense (69.0), total strikes landed (1,385) and takedowns landed (49).
3. A small town provided the roots for his rise.
That Madisonville, Kentucky, a small town of less than 20,000 people on the western side of the Bluegrass State, could produce one of the greatest fighters of all-time seems unlikely at best. Yet, that is where you will find Johnson’s roots. The city also gave rise to Frank Ramsey, a 6-foot-3 guard who was part of seven NBA championships with the Boston Celtics.
4. Opponents who engage him on the mat do so at their own risk.
Few have the wherewithal to tangle with Johnson on the ground. He has delivered 10 of his 26 career victories by submission: four by armbar, three by rear-naked choke, one by guillotine choke, one by kimura and one by keylock.
5. He has mastered his domain.
Johnson has never lost a fight at 125 pounds, with both of his career defeats coming at bantamweight. Since making the flyweight division his permanent home in 2012, “Mighty Mouse” has compiled a 12-0-1 record and defeated 10 different opponents: Reis, Joseph Benavidez (twice), John Dodson (twice), Tim Elliott, Henry Cejudo, Kyoji Horiguchi, Chris Cariaso, Ali Bagautinov, John Moraga and Ian McCall. They have a combined record of 172-56-2, which equates to a .748 winning percentage.