What We Learned From UFC Raleigh

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Chiesa got his grappling-heavy attack going early and searched for a choke, and he weathered a short storm when Dos Anjos reversed position and got back to his feet. The second round saw Chiesa’s lead leg take a few heavy kicks, but once again, he got the fight to the mat and threatened a few submissions while fighting off a leg-lock attempt in the final round. 

Looking at Chiesa now, it’s a wonder how he ever fought at lightweight. He’s another big, swarming welterweight who now has a fair claim to want a fight with anyone in the top half of the division. Doubters might look at his three welterweight wins (Carlos Condit, Diego Sanchez and Dos Anjos) and say his wins came against a past-his-prime Condit and a pair of former lightweights. But that’s a disservice to how good Chiesa looks and continues to look at 170  pounds, and he showed he can impose his grappling game on a solid striker in Dos Anjos. Whether he gets his wish and fights Colby Covington next or anyone else in the top 15, Chiesa is a threat to watch in the increasingly crowded division.

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