UFC 283 finally settled the score between Deiveson Figueiredo and Brandon Moreno. The two were meeting for the fourth time with Moreno coming out victorious via doctor stoppage.
But because of what appeared to be a brutal weight cut to 125 pounds, conversations about Figueiredo’s move to bantamweight have opened up. The 35-year-old Brazilian was a recent guest on MMAFighting.com’s Trocação Franca podcast where he named his intended opponent for his 135-pound debut.
“I’ve talked to my manager after the fight and we came to the conclusion that Dominick Cruz would be a great fight. It would be a great first fight at 135. He’s a former champion, I’m a former champion, so it would be a guy with a name and high level to welcome me at 135. That would be great.
“I’ll go up and represent, I won’t be just another one in the division. I’ll fight the best, no doubt about it. I respect everybody there, they are all excellent fighters, but I’m going there to do my 100 percent.”
Figueiredo has already begun to look at the possible scenarios of a fight with Cruz, as well as the preparations he may need to do.
“Dominick moves a lot and we know we would have to cut his movement. I would 100 percent explore that and train a lot of wrestling. I’ve been training jiu-jitsu a lot, and would train a lot of wrestling too, especially defensive wrestling.
“Dude is a legend and I know he’s an excellent fighter, he can take people down. I’d block his takedowns and box him hard.”
Cruz, a former two-time UFC bantamweight champion, last saw action against Marlon “Chito” Vera in August. He lost via fourth-round head-kick KO.
About the author: Milan Ordoñez has been covering combat sports since 2012 and has been part of the Bloody Elbow staff since 2016. He’s also competed in amateur mixed martial arts and submission grappling tournaments. (full bio)