This past Saturday in the co-main event of UFC 263, we saw the rematch between Deiveson Figueiredo (20-2-1) and Brandon Moreno (19-5-2). These two first met back in December and they fought to a draw. With that result, the UFC decided to run things back on Saturday night.
The first fight between these two was an instant classic. UFC 256’s main event was on the short-list for fight of the year. That night Deiveson Figueiredo should have walked away with the win, but due to a low blow, he was docked a point and the fight was declared a draw.
Had Figueiredo not been docked that point, we wouldn’t have seen this rematch at UFC 263. With getting this new opportunity, Moreno had a second chance to become the first Mexican-Born UFC champion and he didn’t want to waste it.
It was apparent from the opening moments that this fight would be different. Moreno was the one pushing forward and starting all the action. In the first round, Moreno actually dropped the flyweight champion.
After a good opening round, the second round was razor close with both men securing takedowns and top position. However, the third round at UFC 263 is where Moreno made history. After getting a takedown and taking the back of Figueiredo, Moreno locked in the rear-naked choke and became flyweight champion of the UFC.
What’s next after UFC 263?
With a couple of taps from Figueiredo at UFC 263, Brandon Moreno became a huge star. The promotion’s first champion that was born on Mexican soil. His journey is also what makes Brandon Moreno so special.
Moreno appeared on The Ultimate Fighter and he was the lowest seed. He lost very early in the tournament. After having some success to start his UFC career, Moreno was cut from the promotion and had to work his way back.
After dispatching some tough challenges, Moreno got his first shot in December. He came so close to losing the fight, but the draw gave him one more chance that he wasn’t going to let go to waste. Moreno took full advantage and became the UFC’s flyweight champion.
So, what’s next for Moreno? Well, the promotion could always do the trilogy with Figueiredo. Currently, the series is 1-0-1 and there is a market for the third fight. However, I’m not convinced that’s the direction the promotion will go in.
What I could see is the UFC giving the shot to Askar Askarov (14-0-1). The unbeated Dagestani flyweight has gone 3-0-1 since joining the UFC. That one draw is with Brandon Moreno. The two men have history and I could see that being next. Either way, Moreno’s first title defense is going to be massive.