Exclusive: “I’m going to win the light heavyweight belt, and then I will move up and win the heavyweight belt” – Johnny Walker


Johnny Walker Credit:Fighters Only
Johnny Walker Credit: Fighters Only

 

Originally posted on 30th October 2019

The 14th December 2013 is a date that will be forever ingrained in Johnny Walker’s brain.  It was that day that Johnny had his first-ever professional mixed martial arts contest at the age of 22, in the heavyweight division. Having had no previous amateur fights, the fight only lasted :49 seconds in round one and Johnny won via TKO, something that he would be doing later throughout his career thus far.

Johnny fought another ten times at heavyweight in Brazil with a combined record of 8-3 before moving down to Light Heavyweight in March 2017, where he had another two fights before relocating to Aberdeen in Scotland in December 2017 for a year.

Johnny had grown up in Brazil all his life, until at the age of 25, he moved across the world to Aberdeen, for an exciting opportunity to help further his MMA career on a global scale.

It was, in fact, Johnny’s coach Leo Gosling who got a proposal/job offer from a businessman in Aberdeen, to go and teach classes in mixed martial arts. Leo stated he would only accept the invite if it included bringing Johnny over too.   When Leo and Johnny arrived, they soon realised that it was all a big lie and that the gym owner was broke, which resulted in Leo and Johnny receiving no payment.

These were tough times for Leo and Johnny having travelled from Brazil to Scotland, and now, having no money to live on, their only option was to sleep on gym floors.  However, both Leo and Johnny stayed positive and focused on the bigger picture, and Leo managed to get Johnny 3 fights in a month, which not only started to make a name for Johnny on the UK MMA scene (Johnny won the UCMMA light heavyweight title, Feb 2018) but also gave them the much-needed money to survive and progress in the MMA scene.

It wasn’t long after Johnny won his next three fights that he decided to try out for season 2 of ‘Dana White’s contender series in Brazil’ which was held on August 11th, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

This was Johnny’s chance to prove to Dana White that after all the hard work he had put in since 2013, he belonged in the world’s number one promotion. The ‘UFC’.

On Fight Night, Johnny was scheduled to meet Henrique da Silva and was looking forward to showcasing his skills. However, during his warm-up Johnny was physically sick and had a fever.  He also got tired within three minutes of warming up, so he chose to stop and conserve his energy for the bout against Henrique.

Johnny went the whole three rounds with Henrique, in which he won every round on the scorecards.  This was the only fight thus far that Johnny had left it in the hands of the judges. He won via unanimous decision. “It was a great experience even though I was sick, and I couldn’t make it my best performance,” Johnny said afterwards. “It was the first time that any of my fights have gone to the judges’ scorecards”.

That performance impressed Dana White so much that he rewarded Johnny with a UFC contract.

After that victory, Johnny moved to Southampton, England to train with his coach Leo Gosling, where he met female UK fighter and mum of two Bryony Tyrell.  At the time, Bryony part-owned Exile MMA Central, Southampton, and later went on to train with Leo and Johnny in Thailand at Johnny’s gym called ‘Walker MMA’, while preparing for her Bellator debut on 22nd June 2019.  They formed a great bond with each other that still exists today.

Born Walker Johnny Barra Silva de Souza on March 30th, 1992 in Tingua, Rio de Janeiro, Johnny, his brother Valter and his parents, relocated to Rio das Ostras when he was a teenager, where he lived until he was 25 years old.

Rio das Ostras was a cool place to grow up. The city used to be very safe back then.  Johnny would frequently go play out in the street or visit the beach a lot.  Unfortunately, as with many children today, some of the kids at school were mean, and for a while, Johnny got bullied for being so tall and skinny.

At 15 years old, Johnny took up one of his first loves, dancing, RIP rop, and Lamaerobica, (which is a Brazilian style of dance), — gradually moving onto lifting weights.  Then he moved onto Muay Thai, which he fell in love with after his first lesson.

After leaving school, Johnny started studying Chemistry Engineering but decided that he wanted to follow his dream of becoming a world champion mixed martial arts athlete. After being introduced to Leo Gosling at Leo’s gym, Johnny was offered a scholarship to train in Brazilian Jiujitsu, and Leo invited Johnny to train in MMA as well.

With the mentorship of Leo fully formed, and an incredible bond, even when Leo went to London for a year, Johnny trained at Team Evolucao in the South of Brazil. They then reunited to carry on with their close coach/manager bond that they established.

Starting his MMA career off in the heavyweight division, Johnny knew that weight class was not for him. So, he dropped down to light heavyweight, where the 6ft 5 Brazilian has found great success in the 205lb weight class.

Since being signed to the UFC in 2018, Johnny has had three fights with all of them ending with a first-round win, and a total combined time of 2 minutes 48 seconds in the octagon, gaining three “fight of the night” bonuses while in the process. “Starting my career in the heavyweight division and now in the light heavyweight division, I’m going to win the light heavyweight belt. Then, I will move up and win the heavyweight belt” stated Johnny while we were on the subject on whether he will make a return to the heavyweight division.

If you’re familiar with Johnny Walker, then you will know that after every win in the octagon, Johnny, celebrates by doing a version of what he calls ‘the worm’. However, the last time Johnny did his celebratory ‘worm’, he dislocated his shoulder just before having his post-fight interview with Joe Rogan.  He then had to have surgery, and this kept him out of competitive action for four months while his shoulder was healing.

“My shoulder is 100% recovered now. I had surgery and have been rehabbing it, and I’m good to go.  I will have to look for a new celebration to do when I win as my mum won’t let me do ‘The Worm’ anymore lol,” Johnny says laughing.

Having had six months out of the octagon to rehab his shoulder injury, it has given Johnny plenty of time to spend time with his two dog’s – Pitbull’s named ‘Yoga’, who is the female, and ‘Tanus’, the male.  This has given them plenty of time to go down to the beach to chill as well as playing video games.  Which at the moment is ‘Call of Duty 4’ online.  “I haven’t had time to play the new Call of Duty Modern Warfare yet!”. As well as visiting other gyms to get some more experience, as you can never have enough skills, Johnny has recently come back from spending three weeks at SBG Ireland.

Johnny (17-3), ranked #11 will be facing Corey Anderson (12-4), ranked #7, (according to UFC rankings) on Saturday, November 2nd at Madison Square Garden in New York, NY, at UFC 244.

Looking at these two athletes on paper the only similarities (which are small) is that Johnny is 6ft 5 inches and has an 82-inch reach, whereas Anderson is 6ft 3 inches and has a 79-inch reach.

Anderson is on a three-fight winning streak, all coming by way of decision. In fact, all his fights bar 4 have come by leaving it in the hands of the judges. On the other hand, Johnny is on a nine-fight winning streak, with only one of those wins coming by way of decision back in 2016.  That is the only one so far on his overall career record. The rest of his wins have come by way of T/KO and two submissions, with all of those T/KO’s happened in the first round one and one coming in the second round.

With a win over Corey Anderson on Saturday, November 2nd, it should put him in the top #6 of the light heavyweight division.  The question everyone will be asking is, who is next for him? Will he be in title contention to fight the current champion Jon Jones?, Or will it be someone in the top 5? “I’m not bothered by who my next opponent is, I want to fight as soon as possible, within three weeks would be ideal, in Washington, DC, on 7th December.  If not then, then UFC 245 in Vegas on 14th December.”

UFC 244 takes place on Saturday, November 2nd, live from Madison Square Garden, New York, NY.

UFC 198 Brazil Full Results


 

UFC-198-360x240

UFC 198 came from Curitiba in Brazil last night healined by Fabricio Werdum and Stipe Miocic. Also making her UFC debut was a catchweight belt between Cris ‘Cyborg’ Justino vs Leslie Smith.

Here are the quick results:

Main Card

*Stipe Miocic Def Fabricio Werdum via KO 2:47 Round 1

*New Heavweight Champion

Ronaldo ‘Jacare’ Souza Def  Vitor Belfort via TKO 4:38 Round 1

Cris Cyborg Def Leslie Smith via TKO 1:21 Round 1

Shogun Rua Def Corey Anderson  via Split Decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29)

Bryan Barerena Def Warley Alves  via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

Prelims

Demain Maia Def Matt Brown Via Submission (RNC) 4:31 Round 3

Thiago Santos Def Nate Marquardt via KO  3:39  Round 1

Francisco Trinaldo Def  Yancy Mederios  via Unanimous Decison  (29-26, 30-27, 30-26)

John Lineker Def Rob Font  via Unanimous Decison (30-27, 29-28, 30-26)

Rogerio Nogueira Def Pat Cummins via KO 4:52 Round 1

Sergio Moraes vs Luan Chagas ended in a DRAW (29-28, 28-29, 28-28)

Renato Moicano Def Zubaira Tukhugov via Split Decision (29-28, 29-28. 28-29)

Bonuses $50,000 Each

POTN

Stipe Miocic

Ronaldo ‘Jacare’ Souza

FOTN

Francisco Trinaldo

Yancy Mederious

 

 

UFC Fight Night 77 Sao Paulo Full Results


The UFC made a return to Sao Paulo in Brazil last night for what was deemed a ‘Rubber Match’ between Vitor Belfort and Dan Henderson, this time set at Middleweight (185 lbs).  It was, as expected though, another win for Vitor Belfort and within the two-minute mark via a well executed head kick which set up the final array of punches to call time on the trilogy.

UFC Fight Night 77 Sao Paulo

Full Results:

Main Card BT Sports & FS1

Vitor Belfort  Def  Dan Henderson Via KO (Strikes & Punches) 2 mins 07 secs Round One

Glover Teixeira  Def  Patrick Cummins Via TKO (punches) 1 min 12 secs Round Two

Thomas Almeida Def  Anthony Birchak Via KO (punch) 4 mins 24 secs Round One

Alex Oliveira Def Piotr Hallmann Via KO (punch) 0.53 secs Round Three

Rashid Magomedov Def Gilbert Burns Via Unanimous Decision 30-27, 30-27, 30-27

Corey Anderson  Def Fabio Maldonado Via Unanimous Decision 30-27, 30-27, 30-27

Preliminary Card BT Sports & FS1

Gleison Tibau Def  Abel Trujillo Via RNC  1 min 45 secs Round One

Johnny Case Def Yan Calbral Via Unanimous Decision 29-28, 29-28, 29-28

Thiago Tavares Def Clay Guida Via Guillotine Choke 0.39 secs Round One

Chas Skelly Def  Kevin Souza Via RNC 1 min 56 secs Round Two

Preliminary Card Fight Pass

Viscardi Andrade Def  Gasan Umalatov Via Unanimous Decision 30-27, 30-27, 29-28

Jimmie Rivera Def Pedro Munhoz via Split Decision 29-28, 28-29, 29-28

Matheus Nicola Def  Bruno Korea  Via Guillotine  3 mins 27 sec Round 3

BONUSES

POTN

Vitor Belfort

Thomas Almeida

Alex Oliveira

Thiago Tavares

UFC Fight Night New Jersey – Full Results: Rockhold submits Machida


UFC Fight Night New Jersey, came live from the Prudential Center in Newark last night where Luke Rockhold put on a clear dominant performance to become, only, the third person to have ever submit Lyoto Machida.

Luke Rockhold with the RNC on Lyoto Machida UFC Fight Night New Jersey
Luke Rockhold with the RNC on Lyoto Machida UFC Fight Night New Jersey

In the co-main event Jacare Souza proved yet again why he should be the number one contender in the middleweight division, with almost an exact re-run of his first encounter with Chris Camozzi and defeating him under three minutes of the first round.

Jacare Souza with the Armbar on Chris Camozzi UFC Fight Night New Jersey
Jacare Souza with the Armbar on Chris Camozzi UFC Fight Night New Jersey

Max Holloway grows with each fight and the 23-year-old featherweight proved again why he is ‘Blessed’ by dismantling Cub Swanson in the third round with an awesome mounted Guillotine Choke.

Max Holloway with the Mounted Guillotine Choke on Cub Swanson  UFC Fight Night New Jersey
Max Holloway with the Mounted Guillotine Choke on Cub Swanson UFC Fight Night New Jersey

One of the youngest fighters on the UFC’s roster is female athlete Paige VanZant for whom their was a lot of hype surrounding this match up with veteran fighter Felice Herrig. It was to be the youngster’s night who clearly put on a one-sided dominant performance who took the unanimous decision victory over Felice Herrig.

Paige VanZant with a dominant performance over Felice Herrig UFC Fight Night New Jersey
Paige VanZant with a dominant performance over Felice Herrig UFC Fight Night New Jersey

Main Card Results

Luke Rockhold Def Lyoto Machida Via RNC 2 mins 31 secs Round Two

Luke Rockhold Winning UFC Fight Night New Jersey
Luke Rockhold Winning UFC Fight Night New Jersey

Jacare Souza Def Chris Camozzi Via Verbal submission Armbar 2 mins 33 secs Round One

Jacare Souza Winning UFC Fight Night New Jersey
Jacare Souza Winning UFC Fight Night New Jersey

Max Holloway Def Cub Swanson Via Mounted Guillotine Choke 3 mins 58 secs Round Three

Max Holloway Winning UFC Fight Night New Jersey
Max Holloway Winning UFC Fight Night New Jersey

Paige VanZant Def Felice Herrig Via Unanimous Decision 30-27, 30-26, 30-26

Paige VanZant Winning UFC Fight Night New Jersey
Paige VanZant Winning UFC Fight Night New Jersey

Preliminary Card  FOX, BT Sports

Beneil Dariush Def Jim Miller Via Unanimous Decision 29-28, 29-28, 29-28

Beneil Dariush Winning UFC Fight Night New Jersey
Beneil Dariush Winning UFC Fight Night New Jersey

Ovince St. Preux Def Patrick Cummins Via KO 4 mins 54 secs Round One

Ovince St. Preux Winning UFC Fight Night New Jersey
Ovince St. Preux Winning UFC Fight Night New Jersey

Gian Villante Def Corey Anderson Via TKO 4 mins 18 secs Round Three

Aljamain Sterling Def  Takeya Mizugaki Via Arm Triangle 2 mins 11 secs Round Three

Preliminary Card (Fight Pass)

Tim Means Def George Sullivan Via Arm Triangle 3 mins 21 secs Round Three

Diego Brandao Def Jim Hettes Via TKO (Dr Stoppage)* 5 mins Round One

Chris Dempsey Def Eddie Gordon  Via Split Decision 28-29, 29-28, 29-28

*Jim Hettes sustained an Ear Injury for which turned out his ‘Cauliflower’ on his Ear exploded

BONUSES

FOTN

Gian Villante and Corey Anderson

POTN

Luke Rockhold

Max Holloway

All earned $50,000 each

UFC Fight Night New Jersey: Machida vs. Rockhold – Full Weigh-In Results


The UFC is in New Jersey this weekend, coming live from the Prudential Center in Newark, where Lyoto Machida faces Luke Rockhold in which could  potentially be a No.1 contender’s match-up in the middleweight division. With Yoel Romero injured, Chris Camozzi has stepped  in on short notice to face Jacare Souza in the co-main event. In the featherweight showdown Cub Swanson takes on Max Holloway in what should be an action packed fight, while Felice Herrig opens up the Main Card  with a women’s strawweight showdown with the much talked about Paige VanZant, and lets face it, there seems to be no love lost between these two athletes, so expect fireworks from the off and a potential FOTN!

Before we get to the fights we have to make sure they’re all on weight. Here are at the results:

Lyoto Machida vs. Luke Rockhold UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face off
Lyoto Machida vs. Luke Rockhold UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face off

Main Card (FOX, BT Sports)

Lyoto Machida (185 lbs) vs. Luke Rockhold (185 lbs)

Jacare Souza Vs. Chris Camozzi UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face off
Jacare Souza Vs. Chris Camozzi UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face off

Jacare Souza (186 lbs) vs. Chris Camozzi (185 lbs)

Jacare Souza UFC Fight Night New Jersey Weigh In
Jacare Souza UFC Fight Night New Jersey Weigh In

Chris Camozzi UFC Fight Night New Jersey Weigh In
Chris Camozzi UFC Fight Night New Jersey Weigh In

Cub Swanson (145 lbs) vs. Max Holloway (146 lbs)

Cub Swanson Vs. Max Holloway UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face Off
Cub Swanson Vs. Max Holloway UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face Off

Felice Herrig (115 lbs) vs. Paige VanZant (115 lbs)

Felice Herring Vs. Paige VanZant UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face off
Felice Herrig Vs. Paige VanZant UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face off

Felice Herrig UFC Fight Night New Jersey Weigh In
Felice Herrig UFC Fight Night New Jersey Weigh In

Page VanZant UFC Fight Night New Jersey Weigh In
Page VanZant UFC Fight Night New Jersey Weigh In

Preliminary Card  FOX, BT Sports)

Jim Miller (156 lbs) vs. Beneil Dariush (155 lbs)

Jim Miller Vs. Beneil Dariush UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face Off
Jim Miller Vs. Beneil Dariush UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face Off

Jim Miller UFC Fight Night New Jersey Weigh In
Jim Miller UFC Fight Night New Jersey Weigh In

Ovince St. Preux (205 lbs) vs. Patrick Cummins (205 lbs)

Ovince St. Preux Vs. Patrick Cummins UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face Off
Ovince St. Preux Vs. Patrick Cummins UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face Off

Ovince St. Preux UFC Fight Night Weigh In
Ovince St. Preux UFC Fight Night Weigh In

Corey Anderson (205 lbs) vs. Gian Villante (206 lbs)

Aljamain Sterling (136 lbs) vs. Takeya Mizugaki (136 lbs)

Preliminary Card (Fight Pass)

Tim Means (170 lbs) vs. George Sullivan (171 lbs)

Diego Brandao (145 lbs) vs. Jim Hettes (146 lbs)

Diego Brando Vs. Jim Hettes UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face Off
Diego Brando Vs. Jim Hettes UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face Off

Diego Brando UFC Fight Night New Jersey Weigh In
Diego Brando UFC Fight Night New Jersey Weigh In

Eddie Gordon (186 lbs) vs. Chris Dempsey (186 lbs)

Eddie Gordon Vs. Chris Dempesy UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face Off
Eddie Gordon Vs. Chris Dempesy UFC Fight Night New Jersey Face Off