UFC 133 Results: Chad Mendes Defeats Rani Yahya on Spike TV
The Facebook prelims are in the books with no stupendous results so let's skip straight to the Spike TV card where a couple of intriguing matchups await.
Chad "Mighty" Mendes and Rani Yahya begin the night's free cable offering with what is supposed to be a treading water fight for Mendes. Chad is the presumptive No. 1 challenger to UFC Featherweight Champion Jose "Junior" Aldo's belt—the two were originally going to fight on this very card for the strap, but injury sidelined the champ.
Of course, you know what they say about the best laid plans...
Yahya came out and established a better-than-ever striking game and even managed to douse Might Mendes on occasion. Additionally, the Brazilian was able to recover his feet after the American had scored a takedown.
Unfortunately for Rani, he had lots of chances to struggle his way back to the standing position. Mendes took him down almost at will and did enough on his feet to carry the day. At one point, the Alpha Male team member even threw a crowd-pleasing front flip into the mix—vaulting over Yahya, then springing onto his victim's back.
It wasn't the most captivating or dominant performance for the would-be featherweight kinpin, but a win is a win and that one keeps him in line for the shot at Aldo's title.
Chad Mendes defeats Rani Yahya by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27).
Color me skeptical when sizing up Chad's chances against the little Brazilian with the hardware. Yahya—no notorious striker—gave Mendes a bit of stress on his feet. Furthermore, Junior hasn't shown it yet in the heat of battle, but he's supposed to have a pretty ferocious submission game.
If that assessment of his ground skills is anything less than gross exaggeration, Chad Mendes' title aspirations might remain just those.
Still, a nice tussle to start the evening and lead us into Hamill vs. Gustafsson.
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