John Dodson wants to face rising bantamweight Thomas Almeida in 135 lb return

By Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

With Thomas Almeida scoring an impressive victory at UFC Fight Night 77 last weekend to stay undefeated, he’s looking to make a move up the ranks. He’s been massively impressive so far in his UFC run, but that isn’t scaring off all comers, as there’s one man in particular hoping to secure a fight with Almeida: John Dodson.

According to a report from UFC Tonight on Wednesday night, the two-time Flyweight Title challenger wants to face Almeida in his move back to bantamweight.

Whether he gets that fight or not, Dodson’s going to likely plug back in well at bantamweight given previous successes in the weight class, including a KO win over current Champ T.J. Dillashaw to win The Ultimate Fighter 14. That said, Almeida represents a very difficult matchup for his first bout back up after a second loss to Demetrious Johnson.

Almeida has now stopped three straight opponents, with vicious knockouts coming to the last two in Brad Pickett and Anthony Birchak. Dodson would represent a high end opponent for him to face next, but the UFC may yet decide to go a different route.

Penick’s Analysis: Almeida would have four inches in height and a four inch reach advantage over Dodson. That’s not insurmountable, but it’s significant, and given how Almeida’s looked, that’s just a really, really dangerous fight for anyone, with Dodson included. It could very well wind up an entertaining and competitive fight, and if Dodson wants to put that challenge on himself the UFC may oblige, but he could also be setting himself up for a more brutal setback in the process.

[Photo (c) Jason Silva via USA Today Sports]

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