After knocking out Jimmie Rivera in spectacular fashion in just 33 seconds earlier this year (highlights), Marlon Moraes thought he had a title shot wrapped up. As it turns out, “Magic” can’t even score a No. 1 contender fight.
Speaking on the Ariel Helwani MMA Show, the former World Series of Fighting (WSOF) Bantamweight champion says he is more than willing to win another bout to punch his ticket to the big dance, the problem is no one wants to accept his invitation.
“I had the best fight of my life, biggest fight, main event. Then everybody was talking about a title shot. If Cody (Garbrandt) loses, Marlon you’re definitely getting the fight. And I didn’t get it,” said a frustrated Moraes.
“So what to do next? So we talked to UFC and I said, ‘Hey, I want to fight Dominick Cruz.’ It makes sense, he wants to fight for the belt and I want to fight for the belt. And he denied to fight me.”
As it turns out, the promotion is looking to book a fight between Cruz and John Lineker, which could go down at the upcoming UFC 233 pay-per-view (PPV) event on January 26, 2019 in Anaheim, California. That’s why Marlon then turned his attention to Raphael Assuncao, who defeated “Magic” in his UFC debut at UFC 212.
“I told UFC, ‘I’m not playing around,’ I don’t want to fight these crazy fights. I want to fight for the belt.’ I don’t even care about the money much. I want the fight that is going to put me right there. So I thought let’s fight Raphael and do a rematch. And he denied. He didn’t want to fight me as well.”
Assuncao, meanwhile, is playing matchmaker with the aforementioned Rivera.
Since losing to Raphael, Marlon has racked up three straight wins, good enough to earn him the No. 4 spot in the world. Still, a title shot has eluded him and since the rest of the division seems preoccupied at the moment, “Magic” will have to sit idly by to let it all play itself out.
Then again, “No Love” seems to have an empty dance card at the moment, too.