Michael Johnson Wants Zabit Fight At UFC 232

Credit: Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports
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Michael Johnson is looking for a big fight at featherweight.

The former longtime lightweight recently dropped down to 145 pounds. He suffered a submission loss to Darren Elkins this past January in his divisional debut. However, he has since won back-to-back fights at 145 pounds. His latest win was against Artem Lobov at UFC Moncton.

Johnson took the fight on short notice, and unfortunately missed weight as a result. As thanks for taking the fight on late notice, Lobov paid Johnson back the fine he was penalized for missing weight. “The Menace” recently joined MMA Junkie Radio to talk about his next possible move.

The possibility of a fight with rising featherweight prospect Zabit Magomedsharipov arose. Johnson said, while he’s not calling Zabit out, he’d be open to fighting the Russian on December 29th at UFC 232:

“If he wants to fight in December I’m all for that,” Johnson said. “He’s a very tough guy, he’s up and coming and it’d be a great fight as well. He’s ranked.

“None of those guys did call him out and I don’t think anybody really has called him out. I’m not necessarily going on air calling him out, but I’m saying that’s a fight I would take of course.”

Zabit has been extremely impressive since coming to the UFC. He hasn’t suffered a loss in mixed martial arts (MMA) competition since 2013. Upon signing with the UFC in 2017, Zabit has won all four of his Octagon appearances.

He has been able to finish all but one of his fights under the promotion’s banner. Each of Zabit’s finishes have come by way of submission. A match-up with a fighter the caliber of Johnson would certainly be a big test for the 27-year-old.

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