Jose Aldo put in a vintage performance to secure a unanimous decision against Marlon “Chito” Vera, getting back to winning ways and showing is still one of the top threats in the UFC bantamweight division. Entering to his old walkout song – Jay Z and Rihanna’s Run This Town – Brazil’s “King of Rio” looked back to his best in the UFC Vegas 17 co-main event on Saturday night at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, against a No 15-ranked upstart who had been looking to put himself into the mix. But former UFC featherweight champ Aldo (29-7) – considered by many the greatest to ever do it at 145 pounds – picked up his first win in his new division at the third time of asking, with all three judges scoring the fight 29-28 for the Brazilian 34-year-old over Vera (16-7-1). “It was important to come back in the win column,” Aldo told UFC commentator and former two-weight champ Daniel Cormier in his post-fight interview. Next up for The King of Rio? Aldo wants Dillashaw! #UFCVegas17 pic.twitter.com/gdnAg4Utdh — UFC (@ufc) December 20, 2020 It was the Aldo of old, mixing in body shots, leg kicks and even his ground game as he did what he had to do to stifle a momentum change from Vera in the second round. “I have to thank all the people who have been supporting me and stuck around. I trained really hard for this,” he said. The body shots of @josealdojunior helped put The King of Rio back in the win column at #UFCVegas17 pic.twitter.com/knEmAdv6c1 — ESPN MMA (@espnmma) December 20, 2020 Aldo has already turned his sights on former bantamweight champ TJ Dillashaw (17-4), who is returning from a two-year doping suspension. “As far as the next fight, it will be Dillashaw,” Aldo said. “I’ve been talking about Dillashaw a lot. Dana White, make it happen.” Bisping, serving on commentary for the ESPN+ broadcast, gave his prediction to SCMP MMA this week Vera would go on to win the bantamweight title in 2021. Aside from a questionable decision loss to China’s “Kung Fu Monkey” Song Yadong (16-4-1), Vera had won six of his last seven fights heading into this one. That run included a statement first-round TKO of “Sugar” Sean O’Malley (21-1) last time out in August, and he is tied for the most finishes (eight) in the division with Dillashaw. Former featherweight king Aldo had of course fallen to Petr Yan (15-1) in his quest to win the vacant championship in June, “No Mercy” stopping him via fifth-round TKO on Fight Island in Abu Dhabi. He had looked good in the early rounds against the Russian, and was given that title opportunity despite losing a split decision to Marlon Moraes (23-8-1) a year ago on his bantamweight debut, with many thinking the judges had got it wrong in Las Vegas. @JoseAldoJunior 's STILL GOT IT. #UFCVegas17 pic.twitter.com/iDEmiyD3CM — UFC (@ufc) December 20, 2020 But while “Magic” Moraes of Brazil was beaten by Rob Font (18-4) earlier in the night, his second-straight TKO loss having fallen to Cory Sandhagen (13-2) in October, Aldo’s trajectory is back on the up. It was Aldo who looked sharper in the opening round, peppering Vera with stuff leg kicks and shots to the body, but Vera appeared to take the second round on the scorecards by controlling Aldo against the cage in the clinch. “I need you to touch him,” coach Jason Perillo advised Vera heading into the final round. But Aldo quickly entered a body triangle early on, as he finally flexed his Brazilian jiu-jitsu skills once again. Vera returned to his feet and stood up but Aldo was just attached to his back. He walked himself over to his corner to try to get some advice, with Aldo content to just stay in control. “Chito” tried to dump him to the ground but could do nothing to shake Aldo off, nor stop him from picking up a much-needed victory.