Anthony Johnson barely broke a sweat Saturday night at UFC on FOX 18, earning his 10th career knockout inside of the Octagon.
After Ryan Bader tried for a takedown, Johnson remained calm and proceeded to avoid a kimura and earn the mount. Once he did that, it was all over, as “Rumble” moved into a tie for third in the UFC with Chuck Liddell on the finish list.
Johnson sits behind only former champions Vitor Belfort and Anderson Silva on the list.
Following a 2015 TKO vs. Alexander Gustafsson, Johnson (21-5) found himself matched up with Daniel Cormier for the vacant UFC title. He lost via a third round rear-naked choke, but has since rebounded with victories over Bader and Jimi Manuwa.
Known as a powerful puncher, Johnson knew the fight would start one of two ways. And he was well-prepared.
“He was either gonna play it safe or come in after me,” he said. “He came in after me. I never get full-mount.
“How you like my jiu-jitsu now?”
The Florida-based fighter made it known that he wants the winner of Cormier-Jon Jones, who are expected to meet in 2016.
“I’ll be waiting for whoever has that belt,” Johnson said.
For Bader, the loss was his first since a 2013 TKO defeat to Glover Teixeira. The former Ultimate Fighter winner is now 20-5 in his career after his five-fight win streak was snapped.