Over the course of the past year, bantamweight Adrian Yanez has only managed to get in two bouts, but he has been able to do well in both, picking up a unanimous decision win in one and a TKO victory in the other.
While he has picked up wins in his last two bouts, Yanez does admit that the way he fought in each match couldn’t have been more different.
“My fight with Trent Meaux (in November of 2017) was kind of a short notice fight, so I kind to have to stick with what I was good at, and that was moving and staying light on my feet and using my jab a lot,” Yanez told MMAWeekly.com. “That’s exactly how that fight went down.
“In my last fight (this March) with Nathan (Trepagnier), I felt like I got sloppy in that performance. I let his wrestling get to me. I went in there with an ‘I’m going in there and knock this guy out’ attitude and it got me sloppy in that fight.”
For his efforts, Yanez (7-2) is being rewarded with a title shot when he faces Miles Johns (7-0) in a 135-pound championship main event this Friday in Dallas, Texas, at LFA 55.
“I feel being the matador in this situation is the best way to take him,” Yanez said of Johns. “He’s going to come in charging like a bull, so I’ve got to stick and move to the side.
“I noticed it on his Caio Machado fight that he was missing a lot of shots. He wasn’t really setting up his boxing. He really pushed his wrestling in that fight. I feel that if I stick and move, and use my footwork, I feel like I can get the victory.”
While an LFA title is a big stepping stone towards possibly getting a shot at the next level, for Yanez, the link the title has to his youth in MMA makes it even more important.
“Back as an amateur I used to help build the Legacy cages,” said Yanez. “I was always in awe when I saw guys like Daniel Pineda fight and whenever he’d win those belts. I thought that was awesome.
“So me now being in the same position and getting a chance to fight for a belt in a cage that I used to help build back in the day is kind of surreal for me. I’m really excited, but I’m still looking at this as another fight.”
With an LFA title in hand, it might not be long until Yanez does make that move up, but until then he’s more than happy to defend the belt that would mean so much to him.
“At this moment I’m ready to take some big leaps,” Yanez said. “I’m ready to win this belt and get a couple of title defenses if the UFC doesn’t come calling. I love the LFA and what they’ve given me. If a UFC call doesn’t come, I’m ready to defend the belt.”