John Dodson
The Magician


Dispatches The Prospect in Rio Rancho
February 15, 2020
Dodson defeated Nathaniel Wood via TKO (punches) at 0:16 of Round 3 at UFC Rio Rancho on Saturday.
Dodson let Wood get the best of him through the first two frames, with Wood winning the striking battle in each and even recording a takedown in the first round. The second round was more of the same, but Dodson was rightfully upset after Wood landed multiple low blows within close vicinity of each other. Wood was deducted a point and the two finished the second frame swinging. That point ultimately didn't matter, as Dodson was able to land a heavy counter left early in the third that began the fight-ended sequence. Dodson proceeded to charge The Prospect across the cage and eventually got him down, and Wood was in cover-up mode from there. Dodson entered this matchup as a (+140) underdog, but showed here that experience is greater than hype.
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Set to face Nathaniel Wood
December 19, 2019
Dodson (20-11-0) will face Nathaniel Wood (16-3-0) in a bantamweight matchup at UFC Rio Rancho on Feb. 15.
Dodson has gone 3-5 in his last eight fights after losing to Petr Yan via unanimous decision at UFC Fight Night 145 in February. Part of his struggles have stemmed from a lack of necessary speed and strength to defeat the top fighters in the bantamweight division. He'll face a tough test in Wood, who has won each of his first three UFC fights via submission, most recently taking down Jose Quinonez with a rear-naked choke at UFC London in March. Wood is emerging as a threat in the bantamweight division as a result of his efficient striking and takedowns, although Dodson has shown to be effective in his defense in the past. Wood has slight height and reach advantages heading into the fight.
Speed not enough in loss
February 23, 2019
Dodson lost to Petr Yan via unanimous decision (27-30, 27-30, 27-30) at UFC Fight Night 145 in Prague, Czech Republic on Saturday.
Dodson was willing to accept Yan's pressure throughout the course of the fight, attempting to find angles and blitz forward with strikes. While he was able to drop Yan with a counter shot in Round 2, he simply wasn't faster than Yan by a margin that could make his game work, resulting in "The Magician" eating hard shots along the fence line. Dodson was once a perennial contender at flyweight but may not have the speed nor strength necessary to beat the top contenders at bantamweight. He has now lost three of his last four fights and holds a 20-11 record in professional MMA.
Booked for Fight Night 145
January 10, 2019
Dodson will take on Petr Yan in a bantamweight bout at UFC Fight Night 145 on Feb. 23 in Prague, Ariel Helwani of ESPN reports.
It's been an up-and-down past couple of years for Dodson, who has gone 3-4 in his last seven fights. Most recently, Dodson dropped a fight to Jimmie Rivera via unanimous decision at UFC 228 in September. He'll now have to go up against one of the UFC's hottest fighters in the 25-year-old Yan, who has won all three of his UFC fights and boasts an 11-1 record overall.
Struggles with distance and drops decision at UFC 228
September 8, 2018
Dodson lost to Jimmie Rivera via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28) at UFC 228 on Saturday in Dallas.
Dodson came out with his usual strategy. He stayed on the outside and circled away on his bicycle. However, he was unable to close the distance and effectively land strikes. When he did close the distance, Rivera scored with hooks and leg kicks. Dodson appeared to be back on track with a victory over Pedro Munhoz in his previous fight. However, now he will have to regroup once again.
Books first fight of new UFC deal
June 17, 2018
Dodson will take on Jimmie Rivera in a bantamweight matchup at UFC 228 on Sept. 8, reports.
Fresh off a new contract, Dodson is looking to put together his first winning streak since 2015 after alternating wins and losses in his last six bouts. He most recently edged out Pedro Munhoz via split decision in a fight where he barely won the striking battle by seven significant strikes, and also conceded a rare takedown to Munhoz. A former flyweight title contender, Dodson's measurements line up fine in the bantamweight division, though he will be conceding slight height and reach disadvantages to Rivera. Rivera was most recently billed as a top contender in the 135-pound division, but now needs to start a new winning streak after getting knocked out in 33 seconds by Marlon Moraes back on June 1. Dodson holds slight advantages over Rivera in both striking accuracy and striking defense, though he seems like a candidate to enter as slight betting underdog, with many of those numbers accumulated while fighting at 125 pounds.