ALEXANDER GUSTAFSSON VS ANTONY JOHNSON UFC Stockholm
Top light heavyweight contenders Alexander Gustafsson and Anthony Johnson clash in Stockholm Sweden. On home soil for the Swede Gustafsson, this fight was supposed to be his ticket to an inevitable title shot against the reigning champion Jon Jones. With a huge crowd in attendance, all the pressure was on Gus to bring it home.
But standing across from him in the cage was none other than former welterweight turned light heavyweight, Anthony “Rumble” Johnson. Johnson who is known for his hard-hitting style, as a former bouncer turned MMA fighter was also in search of his opportunity to compete for the 205 lb title.
And being in the hometown of the Swede, the crowd was never going to be behind the American who was now in enemy territory. As before the bell had even rung, his introduction by octagon announcer Bruce Buffer drew huge boos from the partisan crowd. So it would be down to Anthony and Anthony alone to silence the masses.
And with the initial introductions now out of the way it was almost time to get this fight started. As both men meet in the centre of the octagon to receive their instructions from referee Mark Goddard. With a touch of the gloves, it was time to finally see which of the two would be taking the next step up in their careers.
Alexander Gustafsson vs Anthony Johnson Round One
And with that, the first round gets underway, as Gustafsson marches forward and lands a low kick on his opponent. Alex appears to want to take the fight to AJ, but that could be a dangerous tactic against a guy with so much power in his hands. Gus then lands another low kick which Anthony takes well.
Johnson looks to be hunting for something, as he twitches from side to side. He seems to be laser-focused on Gus and isn’t allowing the low kicks to take him out of his game. As he pushes forward and tries to land a looping right hand which misses. We can see that Alexander Gustafsson is doing his best to avoid those big Bombs. Staying light on his feet and constantly moving laterally.
But Johnson looks determined to catch his opponent and manages to land a combination. With Gus replying with his own, the fight has the potential to turn into a slugfest and that is something the Swedes team is no doubt trying to avoid. With Anthony’s firepower on the feet being well known. If at all possible, Gustafsson is probably looking to make this more of a technical brawl.
But AJ keeps the pressure on as he tries to land a high left kick to the head. Alexander backs away but throws his own barrage on the break. And it’s here where Johnson manages to get accidentally poked in the eye. As the fight is temporarily stopped, Johnson signals he can continue. And so Mark Goddard being the fighters back to the centre to restart the action.
As they do so Gustafsson tries a front kick to which AJ charges in an appears to make contact with his head. Sending Gus to the ground, he is badly rocked and attempts to get back to his feet and out of danger. But Anthony Johnson smells blood and charges in landing a high kick.
Chasing Gus across the cage, the Swede is now doing his best to avoid any further punishment. As he is swarmed and brought to the ground, he is now in a very dangerous situation. With Anthony now in back control, he lands some heavy punches to the head and face. As the referee instructs Gustafsson to fight back. It’s all too little too late.