Still, in the last year, Johnson has made moves to ensure he finally gets his break, including opening his opening his own gym and joining Titan FC.
“I’m a lot more stable now,” Johnson told MMAWeekly.com. “Especially since I’ve signed with Titan, I’ve been able to focus on it and really commit to fighting.
“This new gym I opened up in August has a lot more tools for me training, so I feel since then I’ve gotten stronger and faster because I have all the equipment needed and don’t have to travel here and there. I’m definitely more focused now that when I train.”
While Johnson has been able to sort his situation out, making his Titan FC debut has been a bit of a struggle, as his scheduled bout with former Legacy FC veteran Mike Bronzoulis has been pushed back twice.
“Mike and I were supposed to fight in April, but then the fight got cancelled,” said Johnson. “I feel like this fight is a long time coming now.
“It was supposed to be April 11, and then got pushed to April 25, and then that didn’t happen. When the fight got pushed back two weeks, it wasn’t too bad, but when it got cancelled, I felt like I went through four weeks of grueling cardio and perfect eating, and for it to not happen it was extremely frustrating.”
Johnson (13-3) feels when he and Bronzoulis (15-7-1) finally meet on Friday night in Fayetteville, N.C., he’ll be the one to dictate where the fight goes, and thus have the inside track on victory.
“He’s good on his feet and is very unorthodox, but I feel I’ve trained with guys who have similar styles, so I feel like it’s not going to be anything I haven’t seen before,” said Johnson of Bronzoulis.
“On the ground I feel like it will be in my world, so percentage-wise, once I get him on the ground I don’t feel like there’s much of a chance of me losing. His best chance is to keep it on the feet, but I still feel pretty confident there that I can still do some damage.”
A win over Bronzoulis could be just what Johnson needs to go from relative obscurity to legitimate Titan FC contender.
“Being from Alabama and not coming from a big school, it’s hard to get notoriety,” said Johnson. “Usually, I’m the guy they bring in to try to be beat by the local guy, so this is a chance to show what I really have and who I am.
“If I take care of business (against Bronzoulis), hopefully I’ll get a chance to fight for the 170-pound title.”