- Demetrious Johnson shared his analysis on the upcoming title fight between Aljamain Sterling and Henry Cejudo at UFC 288
- “Mighty Mouse” did not shy away from admitting he is biased on rooting for “Triple C” to win
Former UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson is banking on Henry Cejudo to dethrone Aljamain Sterling as the bantamweight champ at UFC 288. However, he also pointed out that both fighters can beat each other.
The keys to victory
Speaking to Michael Bisping and Anthony Smith, “Mighty Mouse” said Sterling is the better grappler in the fight but he has to make sure that he’ll be able to capitalize on it against Cejudo’s world-class wrestling.
Johnson also thinks “Triple C” has to overcome his three-year inactivity. On top of that, Cejudo is giving away size and it would be best if he pushes for a knockout.
“The biggest thing that Henry’s gonna have to overcome and battle through is him being off for three years. Aljamain Sterling is the bigger bantamweight and taller and I do give Aljamain Sterling the grappling advantage. Now, grappling is different than wrestling. So, if Aljamain Sterling is able to do what he does best, which is get on people’s back, lock up that body triangle, flatten Henry out, beat him up and look for a choke, we can see Aljamain Sterling beating Henry Cejudo,” Johnson assessed.
“So, he was going to go out there be fast, use his footwork, use his feints and use his wrestling to get where he wants but ultimately look for that knockout like that’s what Henry needs to do and Aljo’s got to be unorthodox, wild punches, wild kicks, push the pace, get him against the cage and try to get his back,” he continued.
Johnson emphasized that despite his advantages, “Funk Master” can only finish Cejudo if he manages to control him on the ground. On the feet, “Mighty Mouse” thinks “Triple C” is more dangerous.
“I don’t think so,” Johnson said on if Sterling can beat Cejudo without grappling. “Henry’s too fast on the feet. He moves better on his feet I mean, obviously it’s a fight. Fight’s a fight, anything can happen right but Henry’s so good at judging distance that I think Aljo is going to have a hard time dealing with the way Henry controls distance.”
It can be recalled that Johnson rivaled Cejudo twice in the UFC in the past but the pair wound up becoming friends and training partners. With that in mind, “Mighty Mouse” said it’s a no-brainer that Cejudo is his pick but both fighters have the ability to beat one another.
“That’s a biased pick… but when I look at the two athletes you know they both can absolutely win like they both have a skill set to beat each other…. [but] My pick is for Henry Cejudo,” he concluded.
Sterling is coming in confident that a win over Cejudo will make him the GOAT of bantamweight. He is eager to move up to the featherweight division afterwards. On the other hand, “Triple C” also plans to fight for the featherweight title after he reclaims his bantamweight belt.
UFC 288 will take place on May 6 at the Prudential Center, Newark, New Jersey.