UFC lightweight Rafael dos Anjos released a statement following his “roller coaster” split decision win over Paul Felder at UFC Vegas 14.
RDA was originally set to fight Islam Makhachev at UFC 254 on Fight Island but he was forced off the card due to COVID-19. The UFC then re-booked the fight for two weeks later at UFC Vegas 14. Unfortunately, the fight fell apart when Makhachev pulled out due to an infection. Fortunately, the UFC called upon Paul Felder to save the day. The No. 7 ranked lightweight/UFC color commentator stepped up to the plate on just five days’ notice, stepping in there with dos Anjos after having had no real training camp for it.
Despite the short-notice factor, Felder and RDA fought 25 minutes tooth-and-nail in an epic fight that won “Fight of the Night.” The two went the distance and at the end of the five rounds, RDA was declared the winner by split decision after some questionable scorecards. Still, he got his hand raised for the first time since May 2019.
Check out the post-fight statement that RDA released on his Twitter.
Last camp was a roller coaster, covid, fight cancelation, 5 days notice for a totally different opponent but when you have Jesus in your corner nothing can go wrong. I want to thank every man on this picture for the great work they’ve done helping me get the win last night @gio_biscardi @dede_pederneiras @emersonfalcaovieira @piratiev_oficial
After going 4-4 at welterweight, RDA has made the move back down to 155lbs at this late stage of his career. 30 fights deep into this UFC run, RDA looked incredible against Felder. Physically he looked fantastic and he performed even better in the fight. Although the lightweight division is much deeper than it was a few years ago when he was champion, RDA is still a dark-horse contender to reclaim his belt. Don’t sleep on him.
What do you think is next for Rafael dos Anjos?