Demetrious Johnson hopes to reschedule record-breaking title bout at UFC 216

Flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson's attempt to set a new UFC record for title defenses hit a detour last week when challenger Ray Borg pulled out with an illness two days before the fight at UFC 215. 

But if "Mighty Mouse" has his way, his pursuit of an 11th defense to break former middleweight king Anderson Silva's hallowed mark will come sooner than later. Johnson (26-2-1) told media members in Edmonton, Alberta over the weekend he's hopeful to face Borg at UFC 216 on Oct. 7. 

"[Borg] is sick, it's just a little flu," Johnson said. "[Oct. 7] is an option they gave me and I said, 'Sounds fine.' At the end of the day, [fight cancellations] happen all the time."

Johnson, 31, did throw out one caveat when discussing the postponement. If UFC can't make it work for Oct. 7, it may not happen at all. 

"I've [postponed] a fight before. Now, if they call me and say Oct. 7 is not going to work, you need to push it longer -- I might just be done for the year," Johnson said. "I'm not going to [extend] six or seven weeks. That's when injuries happen. Things accumulate."

Borg, 24, has become a bit of a serial offender when it comes to missing fights. Not only did he withdraw against Ian McCall three days before his September 2016 fight with an illness, he has missed weight two different times for fights in the 125-pound division. 

The last-minute nature of Borg's cancellation this time left Johnson and the UFC without enough time to find a suitable replacement opponent. And while Johnson took it all in stride and appeared in good spirits sitting cageside during UFC 215, that demeanor is likely to change if he doesn't get paid for showing up ready to fight. 

Johnson told MMAFighting.com on Monday that his management team is currently working with UFC to figure it all out. 

"Usually if it's a quick turnaround, then typically they do not pay the athletes," Johnson said. "Hopefully they do make things happen on Oct. 7, if it's possible, then I can get a paycheck. As far as I'm concerned, my black ass should be going to the bank and depositing a check right now and taking my kids to school. But that's not the case right now."

When Johnson was first contacted last Thursday by UFC counsel that Borg had pulled out of the fight, one of the first questions out of his mouth was in regards to his purse. 

"Don't get me wrong," he said. "When they said, 'Stop cutting weight,' and the first thing I said, I said, 'How the f--- do I get my money? Do I need to finish cutting weight, step on the scale, so I can get my pay check?' Because I just trained eight weeks for this."

UFC 216 will take place in Las Vegas with an interim lightweight title bout between Tony Ferguson and Kevin Lee expected to top the card. 

CBS Sports Insider

Brian Campbell covers MMA, boxing and WWE. The Connecticut native joined CBS Sports in 2017 and has covered combat sports since 2010. He has written and hosted various podcasts and digital shows for ESPN... Full Bio

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