Michael Chiesa
Maverick

USA

Easily decisions Diego Sanchez
WelterweightUFC
July 6, 2019
Chiesa defeated Diego Sanchez via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-26) at UFC 239 on Saturday in Las Vegas.
ANALYSIS
Total domination. It's rare to ever see a UFC fight in which competitor appears to be on a totally different level than his opponent, but it happened in this one. Over the course of the 15-minute bout, Chiesa landed 125 total strikes, 5-of-6 takedown attempts, and was credited with more than two full rounds (11:05) worth of control time. Chiesa was a massive lightweight, and he's even big for the 170-pound division. He appeared to be about three times Sanchez's size on Saturday. If Chiesa can stay healthy, there's no reason he can't make a run at the top-10 at welterweight. He has the size, skill, and all-around game to compete with the best in the world at 170 pounds.
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Facing fellow 'TUF' alum at UFC 239
WelterweightUFC
June 24, 2019
Chiesa (15-4-0) is scheduled to face Diego Sanchez (29-11-0) in a welterweight fight at UFC 239 in Las Vegas on July 6, Ariel Helwani of ESPN.com reports.
ANALYSIS
Chiesa moved up from the lightweight ranks to make his welterweight debut at UFC 232 in December, when he earned a second-round submission victory over Carlos Condit. He'll stick in the division for his next bout and take on a fellow "The Ultimate Fighter" champion in Sanchez, the series' first winner. Chiesa enters this fight with height and reach advantages, even though both men used to compete in the 155-pound division. While Chiesa is highly regarded for his grappling ability, Sanchez is a BJJ black belt himself, though he typically elects to stand and trade with his opponents. Chiesa will look to use his size advantage to take things to the ground, but Sanchez has plenty of escapability and knows what to do when he's on his back. In terms of betting odds, Chiesa sits as roughly a (-345) favorite over the future hall-of-famer.
Submits Condit with one-armed kimura
WelterweightUFC
December 29, 2018
Chiesa defeated Carlos Condit via submission (kimura) at 0:56 of Round 2 at UFC 232 on Saturday in Los Angeles.
ANALYSIS
This match displayed high level grappling. Chiesa's strategy was clearly to engage in grappling and negate Condit's striking. From the opening bell he tried to clinch with Condit. "Maverick" was able to get takedowns at will. He threatened with a rear-naked choke in the first, and was almost submitted by Condit via armbar. In the second round, Chiesa got a takedown and went for a kimura. It seemed as if he had lost it, but he finished the submission with one arm as he used his body to put extra torque on Condit's arm.
To make welterweight debut at UFC 232
WelterweightUFC
September 26, 2018
Chiesa will take on Carlos Condit in a welterweight matchup at UFC 232 on Dec. 29 in Las Vegas, Ariel Helwani of ESPN reports.
ANALYSIS
It's a perfect opponent for Chiesa as far as a welterweight debut goes, as the two measure up nearly identically, and Condit is currently riding a four-fight losing streak dating back to his title fight loss to Robbie Lawler in January of 2016. Chiesa is coming off back-to-back losses of his own, but should be a much fresher fighter in the Octagon without having to go through an extreme weight cut that he has detailed in the past. Condit boasts the better striking numbers of the two men, so look for Chiesa to use his wrestling and grappling to get the edge. Chiesa's last two victories have both been via submission, and Condit has historically struggled with letting the fight go to the mat, sporting just a career 37 percent takedown defense. Chiesa will not longer have the size advantage he was accustomed to in the lightweight division, so it remains to be see if he can still execute takedowns with consistency.
Announces move to welterweight
WelterweightUFC
September 13, 2018
Chiesa will officially move to the welterweight division and his hopeful to debut in December, Ariel Helwani of ESPN reports.
ANALYSIS
This was all but a given following Chiesa's last fight -- a loss to Anthony Pettis where he missed weight and hinted afterwards that the cut to 155 was simply too much. Chiesa's management team would like to debut at 170 pounds against Carlos Condit, though Condit's team doesn't quite seem to be on board with that plan. While the 6-foot-1 Chiesa would certainly benefit from an easier weight cut, welterweight is arguably the deepest and most talent-heavy division in the entire roster.
Ticketed for welterweight after losing to Anthony Pettis Saturday
WelterweightUFC
July 7, 2018
Chiesa lost to Anthony Pettis via submission (triangle armbar) at 0:52 of Round 2 at UFC 226 on Saturday in Las Vegas.
ANALYSIS
It was a terrible 48 hours for Chiesa. After missing weight on Friday and being forced to forfeit 30 percent of his fight purse to Pettis in order for the bout to continue, Chiesa was then saddled with his second loss in a row. Maverick dragged Pettis to the mat on multiple occasions in Round 1, but his striking defense disappeared in Round 2 and Chiesa allowed Pettis to land with regularity before clamping on the submission that ended the contest. Chiesa already stated that this would be his last fight at lightweight as the weight cut to 155 pounds is simply too hard on his 6-foot-1 frame. Chiesa's next fight, whenever that may be, will be at welterweight.