Despite disappointment with UFC 234 win over Yahya, Ricky Simon aiming for top 10

MELBOURNE, Australia – Ricky Simon wants to finally crack into the UFC’s bantamweight rankings, and he hopes his Saturday win did the trick.

Simon (15-1 MMA, 3-0 UFC) couldn’t finish Brazilian veteran Rani Yahya (26-10 MMA, 11-4 UFC), but he worked him over for 15 minutes for a unanimous decision – including a 30-25 score from one of the judges, meaning he had a pair 10-8 rounds on the UFC 234 main card at Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne, Australia. The main card aired on pay-per-view following prelims on ESPN and UFC Fight Pass.

Still, Simon wasn’t thoroughly pleased with his performance.

“After every fight, I don’t know why, but I’m so disappointed in myself,” Simon told MMAjunkie backstage. “I always feel like I could perform better. We put together a great game plan, and I feel like we executed. That’s something we do great: We’re able to dictate where the fight goes, and we knew where Rani wanted the fight to go. We were able to negate that.”

Yahya, Simon and his crew no doubt were certain, wanted to get the fight to the canvas and impose his jiu-jitsu skills to look for a submission. Several times, Yahya stayed on his back, inviting Simon to go to the mat with him.

But Simon kept the fight standing, and even though he had to eat a shot here and there, the strategy paid off.

Simon said one punch Yahya landed was one that was on the mark just because the Brazilian was winging punches, hoping to land a Hail Mary of sorts. That moment, Simon said he had to weather the storm. But he came through it with flying colors, and now hopes he did enough to crack into the UFC’s rankings at 135 pounds.

“I’m new in my career with the UFC, but I’m 15-1 (overall),” Simon said. “That’s a pretty good record at this point. I’m hoping I’m taking that (No.) 15 spot, breaking the top 15 (in the UFC rankings). Obviously there’s stuff I need to work on. I want to keep improving with my coaches, and I hope by the end of 2019 at least be in that top 10.”

For more from Simon, check out the video above.

And for complete coverage of UFC 234, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

1 week ago

Your Ad could be here please email () us for the details.

email us »


Latest news in MMA

UFC Phoenix draws best Fight Night numbers in three years
7 hours ago
UFC Prague breakdown: Who takes tight one between Thiago 'Marreta' Santos and Jan Blachowicz?
8 hours ago
EXCLUSIVE | Ev Ting plans to dominate the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix, starting with finish of ‘Dagi’
9 hours ago
Daily Debate: Which UFC division would benefit most from a tournament?
9 hours ago
EXCLUSIVE | ‘Honored’ Jared Cannonier says he will ‘knock out’ Anderson Silva
9 hours ago
Bellator 217 pre-event facts: James Gallagher looks to rebound at home
9 hours ago
UFC headed back to Canada with UFC on ESPN+ 8 in Ottawa, including Brunson-Theodorou
10 hours ago
Watch MMAjunkie Radio here (8 p.m. ET) with Robbie Lawler, Andre Fili, Freddie Roach
11 hours ago
Anderson Silva vs. Jared Cannonier booked for UFC 237 in Brazil
11 hours ago
BREAKING | Anderson Silva vs Jared Cannonier added to UFC 237
11 hours ago
Michael Page on Paul Daley: 'Where does he go after I beat him' at Bellator 216?
12 hours ago
Bellator announces contract extensions with 'Pitbull' brothers Patricio and Patricky Freire
13 hours ago
With no offers on table, Dustin Poirier hopes for UFC release
14 hours ago
Reports: Paige VanZant vs. Poliana Botelho set for UFC 236
14 hours ago
Georges St-Pierre acknowledges Khabib Nurmagomedov callout, promises answers tomorrow
15 hours ago
Dillon Danis scheduled for NSAC hearing on UFC 229 brawl
15 hours ago
Report | Officials are working on an interim lightweight title fight between Tony Ferguson and Max Holloway for UFC 236
15 hours ago
Matt Mitrione would love Bellator rematch vs. Fedor Emelianenko in Moscow: 'Let's get weird'
15 hours ago
Dustin Poirier and Al Iaquinta call for UFC to release them amid GSP vs. Khabib talk
15 hours ago
UFC champ Tyron Woodley to Georges St-Pierre: 'Would be an honor' to cross paths in gym
16 hours ago