Michael Chiesa continued his strong run at welterweight tonight at UFC Fight Night 166 with a unanimous decision victory over Rafael dos Anjos.
Both men circling each other cautiously to start. RDA steps in to a hard body shot. Chiesa comes barreling forward with punches, but he does eat a counter during that offensive salvo.
Chiesa manages to get around to RDA’s back though and is looking for a takedown. He drags dos Anjos to the mat and now is working for the rear-naked choke.
Chiesa has the body triangle in now as he continues to work for the rear-naked choke. RDA is a high-level BJJ black belt though and he manages to get away from the choke and brings Chiesa back into his guard.
Chiesa trying to adjust to work for another choke attempt, but RDA does well to explode into a reversal and then get back to his feet.
Hard body kick from dos Anjos. Now a low kick that Chiesa clearly felt. However, Chiesa works into another takedown attempt and takes RDA’s back while they are still standing and that’s the last action of the round.
Leg kick for RDA. He tries for a knee, but misses and Chiesa lands punches. Chiesa steps into a big knee. RDA clinches up against the cage.
Back to striking range and RDA knocks Chiesa down. He gets back up quickly though. Now it’s Chiesa driving forward looking for his own takedown, but isn’t fully able to get him down and RDA goes back to striking range.
Hard leg kick from dos Anjos and then another hard one. Chiesa clinches up and walks RDA over to the cage. He lands a knee upstairs and then one to the body.
RDA reverses the clinch. He works for a takedown, but Chiesa does well to stuff that. Back on the feet RDA lands a heavy leg kick again. Now a left hand.
Left lands for Chiesa now. He tries a head kick that’s blocked. Dos Anjos lands the jab. Chiesa returns fire and lands with punches.
Chiesa into the clinch and quickly lands a takedown. RDA looking to stand quickly with 30 seconds remaining. Chiesa trying to take his back as he gets upright. They scramble at the end of the round with Chiesa on top.
Left hand for Chiesa. it gets through again. RDA with a leg kick. Chiesa into the clinch against the cage. He lands a nice takedown.
Chiesa working in half-guard here. He lands an elbow as RDA tries to find a way to escape. Chiesa working on a kimura submission now, but RDA escapes and then immediately starts working on a leg lock.
Not much happening here as they both try to minimize the risk of getting caught in a bad spot here. Eventually RDA gives up on the submission attempt and Chiesa settles back properly in top control.
90 seconds left as Chiesa stays busy on top with body punches. RDA trying to go for a submission, but it doesn’t pay off and Chiesa stays heavy on top and continues to chip away at the body.
RDA had his moments in this fight, but it was Chiesa’s clinch work, takedowns and grinding top control that was the key difference between the two men en-route to a unanimous decision victory (30-27, 29-28 x2).