Last week when the UFC announced Chris Cariaso (pictured) was getting next crack at Demetrious Johnson’s flyweight title, most people’s thought bubble probably read something like, “Huh?”
Some fight fans may have even asked, “Who?”
Shoot, Cariaso even admitted that he was surprised to be granted a title bout on the strength of May’s split decision victory over Louis Smolka and a #8 ranking in the division.
According to UFC president Dana White, Cariaso couldn’t have picked a better time to be healthy and riding a three-fight winning streak.
“The problem is that there is no doubt the fight everybody wanted to see would be John Dodson, but he’s hurt,” White said on UFC.com’s The Download. “Ian McCall just fought, Johnson knocked out [Joseph] Benavidez, and he beat John Moraga. People are going to bitch about Demetrious Johnson no matter who we put him in there against.
“Eventually, he’ll just have to keep knocking people out left and right and then he’ll earn his respect.”
And there you have it, sometimes it’s simply better to be lucky than good.
If you’re crying all the livelong day about having to shell out $54.95 to watch Johnson perform in another pay-per-view, like in his last outing where he headlined UFC 174 against Ali Bagautinov – reportedly one of the worst buy rates in the history of ever – “Mighty Mouse” and Cariaso are actually the co-main event at UFC 177.
The bantamweight rematch between champion TJ Dillashaw and Renan Barao takes top billing on August 30 inside Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento, California.