Sanchez: I can beat Pettis
Diego Sanchez made it to a lightweight title in 2009, losing to BJ Penn. Now back at lightweight and scheduled against the last number one contender, Sanchez is confident not only will he beat Melendez, but that he has what it takes to dethrone currently champion Anthony Pettis:
“I love the way I match up with Anthony Pettis,” Sanchez told MMAjunkie.com. “We’re a contrast in styles, and I feel my style beats his style.”
Not many fighters are eager to call out Pettis (17-2 MMA, 4-1 UFC) after he ran the gauntlet in the UFC’s 155-pound weight class before submitting and taking the belt from Benson Henderson in August. Sanchez (24-5 MMA, 13-5 UFC) is one of the few willing to publicly say he has what it takes to dethrone “Showtime,” specifically due to his grappling skills, which he considers to be underrated.
“I’m a very good wrestler, and I’m a better grappler than I am a wrestler,” Sanchez said. “I feel I’m the best grappler in the division at 155 (pounds), and with my size advantage, I feel there’s not a guy that I can’t take down in that division. So it just comes down to being sharp in my striking and being ready to make a fight a fight.”