Sunday, Oct. 2, 2011 | 2:05 a.m.
Fighting Dominick Cruz is one of the most frustrating tasks in the UFC.
Demetrious Johnson learned all about it Saturday night in Washington, D.C. Although Johnson (10-2 MMA, 2-1 UFC) had his moments and landed some shots, it wasn’t enough to pry the bantamweight championship belt from the elusive Cruz (19-1 MMA, 2-0 UFC).
Cruz won a unanimous decision — the three judges combined to only give Johnson one round win out of a possible 15 — to notch his 10th straight victory in the UFC on Versus 6 main event.
“I proved why I’m the best in the world in my weight class,” Cruz said after the victory. “I’m willing to take on anyone the UFC puts in front of me and continue to show why I am the best.”
Johnson was able to record a takedown and slip out of a couple submission attempts but couldn’t mount enough offense against the champion. When the UFC implements a 125-pound flyweight division, the 5-foot-3 Johnson will be one of the favorites to become its champion.
Until then, he’ll have to settle for his status as one of five bantamweights to fall to Cruz in a championship bout.
“I’m going to take this experience and come back a better fighter,” Johnson said. “I’m not worried about the 125-pound weight class right now. I’m focused on getting better as a 135er.”
Johnson, the UFC’s smallest fighter, fell directly after the promotion’s tallest fighter, 7-foot Dutch heavyweight Stefan Struve, won in the co-main event. Struve (22-5 MMA, 6-3 UFC) beat Pat Barry (6-4 MMA, 3-4 UFC) by submission at 3:22 of the second round.
Struve sunk in a triangle choke from his back before Barry lifted him up off of the ground for an emphatic body slam. It was an entertaining move that Barry went for out of desperation, but it didn’t succeed.
"When he slammed me, I was able to put my arm down to catch myself and sink the submission in deeper,” Struve said.
Check below for the rest of the results from UFC on Versus 6.
Anthony Johnson scored a first-round TKO win over Charlie Brenneman in their welterweight meeting. Johnson landed a head kick at 2:49 of the first round to win the fight.
Matt Wiman defeated Mac Danzig in a lightweight rematch by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28). Both fighters earned a $65,000 bonus for putting on the Fight of the Night.
Yves Edwards defeated Rafaello Oliveira with a second-round TKO at 2:44. After a close first round, Edwards unleashed plenty of punishment on Oliveira in the next frame before the referee stepped in to stop the fight.
Lightweight Paul Sass upset Michael Johnson by sinking in a heel hook for a submission win at the three-minute mark of the first round. It was the undefeated British fighter's 11th win by submission out of 12 career victories.
Washington, D.C., native Mike Easton put on a memorable performance in front of his hometown crowd. Easton defeated Byron Bloodworth via TKO at 4:52 of the second round.
In a lightweight bout, T.J. Grant defeated Shane Roller by submission at 2:12 of the third round. Roller protested the stoppage, as he did not tap out, but the referee said he heard him moan in pain, which can be taken as a verbal submission.
Josh Neer won a welterweight contest over Keith Wisniewski via TKO (doctor stoppage). Neer opened a massive cut to the side Wisniewski's left eye, which prompted the stoppage after the second round.
Walel Watson defeated Joseph Sandoval via TKO at 1:17 of the first round in a battle between two UFC bantamweight newcomers. Watson wobbled Sandoval with a high kick before finishing.