John Dodson has finally won a belt in combat sports. The former UFC flyweight contender headlined Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship 48 in his hometown of Albuquerque, NM, battling JR Ridge for the inaugural flyweight gold, and it didn’t last long.
Dodson cornered Ridge and landed a series of violent punches but it was a left hand that dropped Ridge seconds after. Ridge went down complaining of an eye poke and a push. The doctor was called to check on his eye and allowed the match to resume, and Dodson and Ridge quickly engaged in a wild brawl.
Dodson scored another knockdown in the final seconds of the opening stanza, and this time Ridge could not recover, crowning Dodson the first BKFC flyweight champion via first-round TKO.
Dodson has now won six straight since 2022 with a trio of bare-knuckle boxing wins and three victories in MMA rules, collecting a win inside the RIZIN ring as recently as May 2023. Ridge dropped to 3-2 inside the BKFC ring.
A veteran of 17 octagon appearances with key wins against big-name opponents.The Ultimate Fighter winner nears his 39th birthday with a professional record of 24-13 in MMA and now 3-0 in bare-knuckle boxing.
Dodson’s brother Eric Dodson entered the ring earlier that night to face Robert Armas, suffering two knockdowns in the early rounds to suffer his first loss in three BKFC appearances.