Deiveson Figueiredo attempts to defend his flyweight title for the second time in 21 days against number 1 contender Brandon Moreno. The challenger also fought three weeks ago and has earned the chance to end 2020 with a championship belt.
Deiveson Figueiredo (20-1) is the UFC flyweight champion and current number 10 pound-for-pound man in the organisation. He steps into the octagon for a title defence just three weeks after his last – a record for the fastest championship turnaround. The Brazilian missed weight for his first championship meeting with Joseph Benavidez in February and was therefore ineligible to win the belt even though he won the fight – nevertheless he went on to win by submission with 12 seconds of round one remaining in their rematch in July, earning himself the title and a Performance of the Night bonus.
Figueiredo followed up his two victories against Benavidez by submitting Alex Perez in round one of their contest at UFC 255 three weeks ago and claiming the first defence of his belt. Figueiredo turns 33 on Friday and another defence so soon after his first would round off a hugely successful year for him as it would also be his fourth victory of 2020.
Winning his first MMA title was the apex of a career in which he has only been defeated once, a unanimous decision loss against Jussier Formiga in March last year. Indeed, “Deus Da Guerra” was an undefeated 11-0 prospect when he joined the UFC and had never fought outside Brazil; his first three bouts with the promotion were all also in his homeland.
Figueiredo is 9-1 in the UFC and has won his last five fights. He has four TKO wins in the organisation, all in round two, and three submission victories, all in the first round – overall 17 of his 20 wins have been finishes (nine KO/TKO, eight submissions).
Brandon Moreno (18-5-1) is the former flyweight champion in both the Legacy Fighting Alliance (LFA) and World Fighting Federation promotions. He appeared on The Ultimate Fighter series 24 and made his UFC debut in 2016, amassing a 3-2 promotional record before being released in 2018.
The Mexican fighter would only have one bout before being re-signed by the UFC last year, his LFA title win. In his second run with the company, he is unbeaten after going 3-0-1, winning his last three and being unbeaten in his last five professional fights.
Moreno has 13 career finishes from 18 wins with ten being by submission, and he has only ever lost by unanimous decision. His last bout was a TKO victory over Brandon Royval with just one second of the first round remaining at UFC 255 only three weeks ago meaning Moreno now has three finishes and three decision victories in the UFC.
“The Assassin Baby” is six years younger than his opponent as he had his 27th birthday on Monday, and he may prefer to try and take the fight to the floor against Figueiredo and look for a submission. The champion is strong both on the feet and on the ground, so Moreno will have to be wary of Figuereido’s striking power and of ending up in the wrong position on the mat.
Prediction: Figueiredo by KO/TKO.
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