Demetrious Johnson likes a good fight, but he also hopes more fighters use a level-headed approach.
Fight fans love when athletes throw caution to the wind. It’s why bouts such as Diego Sanchez vs. Clay Guida and Forrest Griffin vs. Stephan Bonnar have a special place in history. A more aggressive style, however, can also increase the chances of long-term brain damage.
During a recent appearance on MMAFighting.com‘s “The MMA Hour,” Johnson used an example:
“I mean, I saw Bobby Green and Lando Vannata (at UFC 216), and everybody in the back was like, ‘Oh, man, that’s a sick fight!’ And I’m like, ‘Dude, look at his face, that cannot be good for his brain.’ I’m just honest. I think [Vannata] is an amazing fighter, he has a great game, he comes forward, does a good job mixing it up, great power. But for me, if I was his coach, I’d be like, ‘Dude, you need to work on your wrestling. We need to work on your clinch game. We need to work on not taking so much damage, because I want you to have a long career.’”
He went on to say that prize fighters should be able to end their career sustaining the least amount of damage possible.
“When you’re done fighting, I don’t want to look back at your fights and be like, ‘Oh man, you were such a sick-ass fighter, you did this and this.’ I want to look back at your career and be like, ‘Man, you did such a good job of not taking any damage, and look, you have something to show for it. You have a 15-year career, instead of a short three or four years because of all the concussions you’ve taken.’”