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Moicano feels Bektic win puts him ‘in line’ for a title shot: ‘I’m here to be a champion’

Featherweight Renato Moicanos feels he has never been so close to title contention in his career.

UFC 227 Dillashaw v Garbrandt 2
Renato Moicano
Photo by Joe Scarnici/Getty Images

Featherweight contender Renato Moicano believes he is just one more fight away from earning a title shot. Paired up against fellow rising prospect Mirsad Bektic for a bout at UFC 231, the 29-year-old tells Portal do Vale Tudo the fight could very well be the final hurdle before he finds himself fighting for a belt.

On the same event, 145 lb champion Max Holloway is scheduled to defend his belt against Brian Ortega. And the idea of stepping up as a late replacement to fight one of them, in case the other gets hurt, is one Moicano is trying not to focus on.

“Yeah, we’ve thought about that idea,” Moicano said of replacing someone for the main event, “but I’m not even thinking about it. I can’t, because I got a really tough opponent ahead of me. I’m training to face a wrestler who’s good on the ground, good with ground and pound, who has a really consistent game. That only shows I don’t run away, I don’t pick my opponents. I’m here to fight the best, to be a champion. Bektic represents a new generation of fighters. He’s a great opponent. If I win, I think I could be in line for a title shot. There’s nothing better than having the title fight on the same night.”

Renato Moicano (13-1-1) will look for his third straight win at UFC 231, on December 8. The Brazilian defeated Cub Swanson and Calvin Kattar in his two latest bouts and hasn’t lost since July 2017, when he was submitted by current title challenger, Brian Ortega.