Kajan Johnson Isn’t Surprised By UFC Release, “I’m Not Conor McGregor”

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Kajan Johnson was once on a four-fight win streak in the UFC. That streak was ended by Islam Makhachev via submission in July. Heading into his fight against Rustam Khabilov in Moscow last month, Johnson believed, win or lose, it would be his last fight in the UFC. The 34-year-old attempted to negotiate a new contract with the promotion, however, the UFC preferred he fight out his current contract first.

The final fight on his deal was against Khabilov, which he lost, and the UFC opted not to re-sign Johnson. Speaking to Bloody Elbow recently on the matter, Johnson detailed how he knew all along the promotion probably didn’t want to re-sign him:

“I’m pretty sure they were planning on letting me go, anyway,” Johnson said. … “I had pretty much rectified and accepted that that was gonna be my last fight in the UFC. I was still talking to Sean and trying to get a new deal done, but they just said it didn’t align with them.

“They said they didn’t really know what to do with me at that point. I was hopeful, but I realized it was a very, very slim chance — maybe one-percent chance — that I would get re-signed.”

Johnson believes it’s possible he could fight for the UFC again one day, however, it’s unlikely unless the promotion needs a late-notice replacement for a Canadian card:

“There’s just so many fighters out there,” he said. “They still wouldn’t need me. I’m not Conor McGregor. I’m not gonna fill a f-cking stadium. I don’t represent an entire demographic of people that are gonna fly across the world and come to the show.”

What do you make of Johnson’s comments?