Former UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson’s departure from the promotion was essentially the final nail in the coffin of the division he reigned over since its inception in 2011.
The recent cuts of flyweight fighters Jose Torres and Jarred Brooks would only confirm the division was on its last legs.
But in surprising move, former UFC two-division champion Conor McGregor took aim at ONE Championship CEO Chatri Sityodtong over the dismantling of the UFC’s 125-pound division and implored him to sign the fighters looking for a new promotion.
You must now take all the 125lbers that have been let go, Chatri.
You talk all of this Martial Art and respect talk, yet your greed has directly cost more than half a fighting division it’s chance to earn income for their family.
Have respect @YODCHATRI.
Sign the division.
— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) November 8, 2018
Johnson was, of course, traded to ONE Championship for Ben Askren in shocking move last month. While his first fight in his new home has yet to be announced, Johnson has been confirmed as an entrant in the upcoming ONE flyweight eight-man tournament. He will also serve as Chief Brand Ambassador for it’s new ONE eSports venture.
Ben Askren and Patricio Freire quickly tweeted their displeasure with McGregor’s tweet.
You’re either an hypocrite or cheap whiskey and drugs have affected your mind.
You should blame the @UFC for ending the division, not @ONEChampionship. The UFC could keep the division and DJ if they wanted. You could pressure them, but you don’t really care. Shut up. https://t.co/oGI7clli9H
— Patricio Freire (@PatricioPitbull) November 8, 2018