Johnny Walker vs Jimmy Crute is purportedly set to bolster the first quarter of the UFC’s 2021 schedule.
The news of Walker and Crute possibly locking horns was initially put out there by ESPN’s Brett Okamoto. He relayed this information via his personal Twitter.
— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) January 2, 2021
This bout will be a telling one for the light heavyweight contendership hierarchy this year and beyond. Johnny Walker and Jimmy Crute rank at nine and twelve respectively per the UFC’s official rankings.
Johnny Walker vs Jimmy Crute
Walker recently rebounded from a two-fight losing skid. He did so by dispatching Ryan Spann via elbow and hammer fists less than three minutes into the opening round of their September contest.
Johnny Walker punched his ticket to the octagon with a victory on Dana White’s Contender Series. He has largely carved a swath through the competitive field since his November 2018 UFC debut.
Conversely, Crute now finds himself on the heels of back to back victories. This came after taking his first career defeat to Misha Cirkunov via first-round Peruvian Necktie in September 2019. Jimmy Crute’s last bout saw him best Modestas Bukauskas via first-round knockout in October.
The fellow Contender Series product now has a 4-1 UFC record overall. Crute has garnered earlier victories over Paul Craig and Sam Alvey.
With longtime divisional kingpin Jon Jones navigating a seemingly permanent move to heavyweight and middleweight kingpin Israel Adesanya stepping up to contend for the 205 lb belt next, it creates a curious landscape for the light-heavyweights throughout this calendar year.
It seems like Glover Teixeira is the obvious next challenger for the Blachowicz-Adesanya winner. Plus, several high stakes matches at 205 are coming up (Dominick Reyes vs Jiri Prochazka, Aleksandar Rakić vs Thiago Santos, etc).
There’s compounded pressure for Walker and Crute to really show out here. Because a win here arguably puts the winner a victory or two away from a possible title shot.
Who do you think gets it done between Walker and Crute when they trade leather?