Deiveson Figueiredo isn’t happy with the interim Flyweight title situation, but his rival, Brandon Moreno, doesn’t think anyone cares.
While the Brazilian champion heals from lingering hand issues, the show goes on with Moreno set to take on Kai Kara-France at UFC 277 on July 30, 2022. After hearing the news, Figueiredo was upset, threatening a potential change in weight classes by moving up to Bantamweight. This also comes after Figueiredo made it clear he wants a big pay increase for a fourth consecutive fight with Moreno.
“I don’t know what he’s thinking right now, [whether] it’s really for the money, or he’s kind of scared,” Moreno told The MMA Hour. “I don’t want to say he’s scared — it’s too much trash talk. I’m sick of trash talk with this guy. I’m done with that. But, I don’t know. He doesn’t want to fight, and that’s it. I know I have an important matchup against Kara-France, but hopefully, I can see him again before the end of the year. He’s saying a lot of different, crazy stuff like, ‘Oh, I want more money and if the UFC doesn’t give me more money, I’m going to go to Bantamweight.’
“Like anybody cares, man. Nobody cares,” he concluded. “It’s not like he’s moving to 135 and the UFC is going to go, ‘Oh, okay, you’re going to move to 135? I’m going to give you more money now.’”
There were rumblings immediately following the pair’s trilogy bout in Jan. 2022 that a fourth fight was on the way, it was just a matter of when. Considering the competitive nature of the rivalry, it’s been an incredibly rare case where a fourth straight bout made some sense, and the overall community appears fine with seeing it at some point.
However, Moreno thinks the most obvious anti-quadrilogy party was the other half currently holding the title.
“That was the original plan,” Moreno said of the fourth Figueiredo bout. “Everybody wanted that fight. UFC, I wanted that fight, obviously — everybody except Figueiredo. He wanted — I don’t know what he wants, to be honest. But he said no, and I felt a little bit frustrated because I’m lying to you if I say I’m not here for money, because I love money, too. I love to buy stupid things, but imagine the legacy. Four fights against somebody, the first one in [UFC] history, that sounds amazing.
“Obviously, I’m crossing my fingers to fight him again in the future ... because this history is so different than the other ones,” he continued. “The first one was a draw, I beat him terrible in the second one, [and] the f—king judges in the third one stole my belt. I thought the fourth fight against him would be a very interesting matchup. But it is what it is. I’m just really focusing on my next fight against Kara-France.”
Moreno’s upcoming battle with Kara-France will also be a rematch. The former champion defeated Kara-France at UFC 245 in Dec. 2019 via unanimous decision.
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