Russian Petr Yan proved with action that he is one of the strongest fighters in the flyweight division of the UFC. Yang will soon face the hotly contested fighter Sean O’Malley. This article will talk about Peter’s path to the championship and his prospects in the best league in the world.
Childhood and Early Successes
Peter Yan was born on February 11, 1993, in a small village in the Krasnoyarsk region. Many fans are interested in his last name and who the fighter is by nationality. According to statements by the athlete himself, he has Chinese roots.
By the way, as they say on cricket betting sites in India many athletes of Chinese origin do well in top sports. It applies to both cricket and martial arts.
Ever since he was a child, Peter started fighting in the street. Even sports sections like taekwondo and soccer did not help him distract himself. Perhaps that was the time when the character of the future UFS champion hardened. Only at the age of 12 managed to find an application for the boy’s frenzied energy. In 2005, he decided to join a boxing club. After that, he was done fighting on the street. It is known that since childhood Jan was a fan of Kosti Tszyu’s fights. It was his example that Peter followed, going to boxing.
Transition to MMA
To develop his skills, Peter decided to move to Omsk. There he practiced boxing and worked as a security guard in one of the most dangerous areas of the city. Thinking about making a real living, Peter quit his job as a bouncer and decided to concentrate on a career as a professional MMA fighter. This decision changed the guy’s life. This move was preceded by his boxing background and his love of street fighting. After all, an MMA fight is a very real street fight.
Peter went to the club “Alexander Nevsky”, where he met his first trainer, Alexander Potatushkin. It was he who laid the foundation for the future MMA star. Now Peter Yan earns hundreds of thousands of dollars. However, at the beginning of his career, there was no question of such money. Yang took his first fight without even thinking about it. For him, he had to get 20 thousand rubles, which should have gone to pay the rent of his apartment and a gift to his girlfriend. So it was impossible not to earn a victory bonus.
The debut bout took place in 2014. Peter’s opponent was Marat Bakiev, a medalist of the World Championship in combat sambo. This is a very bad opponent for a boxer who has only recently started mixed martial arts.
As expected, the fight started very badly for Jan. His opponent was dragging him around and showing his superiority in wrestling. Moreover, the rules of that fight allowed him to hit with his head, and his opponent took advantage of that.
It seemed that the fight would surely end in a defeat for Jan, but suddenly his coach shouted almost to the whole arena – “right straight, left at the side”. The first attempt was a mess, but the second one hit the target and knocked out his opponent completely.
The coach always believed in Peter. He was the one who instilled in him the goal to become the UFC champion. He believed in him back then, when it was silly to even dream about it, let alone say it out loud. Jan moved as he should and his skills could compete with the top opposition in the USFS. The coach had only one piece of advice for his mentee: to learn English. Unfortunately, Peter never listened to it.
The Road to The UFC
All of 2014 Ian gave to amateur fights and gained experience to come to the professionals as prepared as possible. In 2015, his career took off. Jan began to support his fellow countrymen businessmen and help financially, paying for training and training camps. The fruits were not long in coming. By the end of the year, he was able to defeat four opponents and bring his record to 5-0.
In 2016, Peter Jan fought against Magomed Magomedov in the ASB. It was a high-profile confrontation that drew national attention. In the first fight, it seemed that Peter owned the advantage, but the fight was still a close one. However, the judges were of a different opinion and gave the win by a split decision to his opponent. This was the first defeat for Petr Yang in his professional career and it rekindled the flame in the fighter’s heart.
After that, Peter Jan went to training camp for his future rival and world MMA legend Jojo Aldo. It was an important milestone in his career. After his return to Russia, Peter won the ASF and immediately got a rematch against Magomed Magomedov. The title of the organization was at stake in this fight.
This time the fight was completely different. Petr Jan had a distinct advantage and defended well against his opponent. He won by unanimous decision of the judges and showed a beautiful and spectacular fight.
In contrast to other representatives of Russia, Jan was not going to stay in the SBS for long, even having the title. In his next fight, he defended his belt against an undefeated fighter and managed to knock out his opponent hard. Immediately after the fight Ian announced that he was moving to the UFC, vacated the title of champion, and began to prepare for his debut in the strongest organization in the world.
In 2018, it was time for Yang to make his UFC debut. In his first fight in the world’s strongest league, the Russian was challenged by the Japanese Ishihara. At the time of the fight, Ishihara had seven fights in the UFC. Before the fight, the Japanese felt rather floppy and allowed himself a lot. Though, he was only famous for his concrete chin and the fact that he was hard to knock out.
As soon as the fight began Peter began to do incredible things. The difference in class and level of the fighters was noticeable. Jan acted aggressively and immediately knocked out his opponent. After that, he let the Japanese get up and continued the beating. It ended in the first round when Peter threw a straight punch and finished his opponent on the ground. The commentators were in shock, and the audience cheered the UFC debutant’s victory standing up. Jan very loudly asserted himself already in the first fight.
After that Petr had two more fights and won each one convincingly. It was noticeable that his striking technique is on a completely different level in comparison with his opponents, and the pressure and ferocity are something unprecedented even for UFC fighters.
Meanwhile, Peter moved to Yekaterinburg and began to represent the club “Archangel Michael”. This was an important moment in his career, as the support of this club helped him move faster toward his goal.
At the end of 2018, Peter began demanding big-name opponents from league management. Rumors followed that he would have to fight John Dodson. By that point, Ian had figured out how the UFC worked and began to use elements of the trash talk. For example, at the weigh-in for the fight against Dodson, he performed a Caesar and defiantly put his finger down in front of his opponent’s face.
The fight with Dodson, although it turned out to be a winnable fight, nevertheless showed the gaps in Jan’s game. He had some difficulties in the fight and went down once. After a hard-fought Dodson, Peter closed his gaps and scored wins over Jimi Rivera and UFC legend Juraj Faber.
After two clear victories, Ian started demanding the title and got his way. UFC lightweight champion Henry Sehudo retained the title. For the vacant belt, it was decided to match Peter Yang and Jose Aldo, who Yang had once trained under.
In 2020 it was time to find out who was the strongest. The fight started fairly even, but then Jan began to get the upper hand. It turned into a real beating of the legend and the referee was forced to stop the fight. Thus, Petr Yang won the title of UFC champion.
In the first defense of the title, he had to fight against Aljamain Sterling. Bookmakers saw Jan as a slight favorite. The only question that plagued fans and analysts was whether the Sterling fighter could beat Peter. The answer was no.
Throughout the first half of the fight, Jan dominated and even moved his opponent to the ground himself. Everything was going towards a confident victory for the Russian until the unforeseen happened. Ian delivered an illegal knee blow in the parterre, after which Sterling almost got an Oscar for his antics. The American was showing with all his appearance how hurt and shocked he was. The referee assessed Aljamain’s acting efforts and disqualified Ian. This was the first disqualification in the history of the organization’s title fights.
Ian wasn’t going to sit out long after the loss and was able to defeat the top lightweight Sandhagen. It was time for a rematch. This time the bookmakers’ quotations changed considerably. If in the first fight the odds were equal, before this fight you could bet for 1.3 on Jan.
The fight turned out extremely unsuccessful for Jan. The first round was equal with a small advantage for the American. However, he took the next two very confidently due to the fight. Ian reversed the course of the fight in the championship rounds, but it was not enough to win. The judges awarded the victory to Aljo by unanimous decision. Ian is still the top lightweight in the UFC and if he beats Sean O’Malley he has the right to claim another title fight.