Brazilian jiu-jitsu blackbelt Andre Muniz has a versatile striker ahead of him for his next outing. Paired up against Uriah Hall at UFC 276, ‘Sergipano’ hopes to score another signature submission win, but will not shy away from a striking battle if he must stay on the feet.
In an interview with Combate, Muniz revealed what he thinks are Hall’s strongest skills. At the same time, Andre also made sure to point out how ready he is for the clash of styles and how he expects to handle Uriah’s unpredictability.
“Hall is very experienced, he’s a seasoned vet in the promotion,” Muniz said. “He has beaten great guys. You have to respect him, no doubt. You have to respect his knockout power. He has good distance control, a good jab. He can kick with both legs. He’s a pretty dangerous guy on the feet. You have to be careful all the time. At any moment, there may be a punch or a kick coming your way. We’re very well-trained and prepared, though. We’re ready to neutralize his game and put on a great performance on Saturday.”
Despite being known for submitting jiu-jitsu legend Ronaldo ‘Jacare’ Souza and having 15 submission wins to his name, Muniz wants fans to know he is not just a grappler. Although jiu-jitsu will always be his main tool, Andre takes inspiration from lightweight champion Charles Oliveira to evolve and become a fully well-rounded mixed martial artist.
“The jiu-jitsu community is very united,” Muniz said. “They want us to honor the history and keep on going for the submission. That’s our art and that’s what I look to do. Of couse we’ve been evolving, just like our champion Charles Oliveira has been working on his striking. Only jiu-jitsu is not enough, or getting the fight to the ground. You have to know how to strike and wrestling, too. We’ve been trying to evolve everywhere, so we can keep on winning.”
Currently on a four-fight winning streak in the UFC, Muniz (22-4) defeated Antonio Arroyo, Bartosz Fabinski, the aforementioned Souza and Eryk Anders during this time, with three wins coming by way of armbar. The 32-year-old’s last loss happened in October 2016, when he got knocked out by Azamat Murzakanov.
Now, Muniz is expected to face Hall at UFC 276, on July 2, in Las Vegas, Nevada. The card is scheduled to be headlined by a middleweight bout between the champion, Israel Adesanya, and challenger Jared Cannonier.