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Cut Ends Deiveson Figueiredo’s Night Early, Brandon Moreno Unifies Flyweight Title

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – JANUARY 21: (LR) Brandon Moreno of Mexico defeats Deiveson Figueiredo of Brazil in their UFC lightweight title fight during UFC 283 on January 21, 2023 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Buda Mendes/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

After three fights and more than an hour in the octagon, UFC flyweight champion Davidson Figueiredo and interim champion Brandon Moreno face off in the UFC 283 co-main event on Saturday.

The card from Rio de Janeiro marks the promotion’s first trip to Brazil in almost three years and fans will undoubtedly support Figueiredo. However, with their pro series record at 1-1-1, it does feel like anyone’s fight.

Figueiredo vs. Moreno 4 started with no glove touches. Instead, the pair met in the middle before Moreno opted to circle outside. As they drew closer, it was Moreno who delivered a knockout, which Figueiredo defended with a guillotine, although there was no real hope of bringing it down. Figueiredo did manage to buy some time as Moreno’s progress effectively stalled. When he broke free, Figueiredo scrambled back to his feet.

From there, Moreno unleashed a connected leg kick. A game of chess ensued as the two felt each other and exchanged clicks. Both fell to the ground, but neither seriously injured the other. Figueiredo did fall behind with a heavy leg-kick combination approaching the final minute of the round. Moments later, Moreno tore open the body. They went down before the buzzer and Figueiredo locked the heel hook, but Moreno escaped the round.

At the end of the bout, Moreno complained to the referee about Figueiredo’s illegal kick while they were lying on the mat. It appears that kicking football was indeed illegal, but was never penalized.

Figueiredo turned things around early in the second inning, securing his own knockdown. He went to work, and Moreno was on high alert before rushing off. Just over a minute passed this round. Figueiredo flashes Moreno with his right hand. The pair is now trading a little more frequently. Moreno shoots low. Then the right hand. Figueiredo walks over to the body. Moreno jabs; the Brazilian goes to the body again. When the champion kicked high, Moreno dumped him. Figueiredo pops up, but scrambles to see him lock the guillotine! It looked tight, but Moreno fought with his hands. Moments later, Figueiredo was forced to let go of the choke.

That leaves Moreno with 90 seconds to work in Figueiredo’s defence. Moreno basically chose to rub his head against Figueiredo’s to add to his discomfort, even though he didn’t do much actual damage. Still, he finished the round with a sneaky elbow.

The third round saw the tide turn further in favor of Moreno. About 90 seconds later, a heavy punch landed Figueiredo in the eye. The trailing punch appeared to injure Figueiredo, but instead grazed his eye, prompting an immediate protest from the champion. Which blow does more damage, a clean punch or a foul, that is the question. Either way, Figueiredo was on the ground, covered in blood, with Moreno on top.

Despite the adversity, Figueiredo survived the round. But with Moreno closing the frame at the top, it was a poor performance for the Brazilian champions. The crowd wasn’t excited, letting their voices be heard between rounds. Figueiredo’s wound under his right eye is also a concern.

serious concern. After careful observation before the start of the third game, the doctor waved the game off. While Moreno had taken the lead, it wasn’t a happy ending for the fans. The doctor’s lockout ended early on the night, and Moreno captured the unified UFC flyweight title.

Meanwhile, Figueiredo said he was ready to move into bantamweight.

Official result: Brandon Moreno def. Deiveson Figueiredo by TKO (doctor suspended), Round 3, 5:00

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