Petr Yan

Petr Yan has done nothing but win since he joined the UFC in 2018, and the rising Russian star doesn’t see that changing anytime soon.

Yan believes he’ll “rule” the UFC’s 135 division for a “very long time”

“No Mercy” joined the UFC in 2018 with a fair amount of buzz behind him, on account of the fact he had gone 8-1 up until that point.

Since then, Yan has lived up to the hype and then some, by going 6-0 in the Octagon. Not only that, Yan has defeated top-tier bantamweights like Jimmie Rivera, John Dodson and Urijah Faber during that time.

Well, on account of that, Yan has been booked to face Jose Aldo for the vacant bantamweight title at UFC 251, July 11th. While talking to MMA Junkie recently about the upcoming fight, Yan said this through an interpreter.

“Aldo is a very experienced and well-trained fighter,” Yan said. “He doesn’t make many mistakes. He will be ready to go the full distance.

But I believe I have the ability and tools to defeat him. I have no doubt it will be an exciting contest because our styles match up very well.

“I envision this fight will end with my hand being raised. I believe I can defeat every fighter in my division.”

There’s plenty to like about this match-up on paper, no question. It’s also worth noting here that Yan trained with Aldo back in 2016 (you can read what the latter’s teammate, Eduardo Dantas, had to say about that and the upcoming fight here).

The fight is going down at a very interesting time in the bantamweight division. Not only because of Henry Cejudo’s retirement, and the title being up for grabs, but because other fighters like Aljamain Sterling, Sean O’Malley and Cody Garbrandt are coming over thrilling wins.

While talking about that and the state of the division, however, Yan said this.

“In my opinion, bantamweight is the most exciting division in UFC,” Yan said. “I’m glad they performed good and represented our division very well.

I’m excited to face all top contenders in the future and have belief in myself I will rule this division for a long time.”

Could we be set for a lengthy reign from Yan?

So, first things first, and that’s getting through Aldo, one of the greatest fighters of this generation. While Yan is a sizeable favorite to win the fight, likely on account of his age, speed and power, it would be silly to write Aldo off.

If Yan does win the belt, then he’ll likely face Sterling after that, who could be the most complete fighter he’s faced to date in the UFC. Does Yan have the tools to negate Sterlings’ wrestling and ground game?

Maybe we’ll find out.

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