Anthony “Rumble” Johnson:
The last and most controversial name on the list of UFC 191‘s biggest winners is of course no one other than Anthony ‘Rumble’ Johnson, who saw multiple anti-domestic and animal cruelty protests take place in his name yesterday.
But in the cage, ‘Rumble’ went about business as usual, knocking No. 7 Jimi Manuwa’s block off with an earth-shaking second round counter punch.
He’s now in a curious position in the shallow light heavyweight division, as he was thoroughly dominated by current champion Daniel Cormier at UFC 187 in May. Cormier will defend his belt against Alexander Gustafsson, who Johnson absolutely destroyed back at UFC on FOX 14, at UFC 192 on October 3, and if he wins, he’ll most likely look to settle his longstanding beef with Jon Jones if ‘Bones’ is back anytime soon.
That means ‘Rumble’ will most likely have to keep knocking off contenders, and he’s done nothing but with the exception of the Cormier fight since returning to the UFC at 205 pounds. There aren’t a lot of logical match-ups for ‘Rumble’ right now, but one that comes to mind is the winner of Glover Teixeira vs. Patrick Cummins at UFC Fight Night 77 from Brazil.
If Teixeira wins in his homeland, then a showdown of the top-ranked former title challengers would be the obvious choice for the next title eliminator bout. It will also be interesting to see if ‘Rumble’s’ domestic violence and animal cruelty accusations actually go anywhere or just turn out to be a witch-hunt, but for now he appears only focused on fighting.
With highly touted new grappling coach Neil Melanson on his side, that’s a scary proposition for the rest of the 205-pound division, and we could definitely see Johnson fighting for the belt again sooner than later.