Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Marlon Moraes Wanted A Different Opponent at UFC Fortaleza

In tonight’s main event of UFC Fortaleza, Marlon Moraes and Raphael Assuncao will take part in a rematch of their encounter from June of 2017. Marlon Moraes is willing to do whatever and face whomever it takes to get a bantamweight title shot, but he had another specific name in mind for his next opponent, that being bantamweight legend Dominick Cruz.

“I have a lot of respect for him. He’s a big name,” Moraes told MMAWeekly when speaking about Cruz. “The best bantamweight in history and what he did for the sport and what he did being away for a long time and then coming back and winning the championship. That was a fight that I wanted. That was a guy that I wanted to fight. I didn’t get the fight.

“I got Assuncao. I respect what happened. I’m just ready to go out there and fight Assuncao.”

Marlon Moraes last competed in June of last year when he picked up the head kick victory over Jimmie Rivera at UFC Fight Night 131. Sitting out further, Moraes says, was not an option:

“My main concern was going down and having two top contenders like me and Raphael to fight for the title. I thought maybe we would fight for the interim belt if TJ [Dillashaw] was going down but we’re fighting for No. 1 contender and we’re going to decide who deserves to be there and who deserves to fight for the title,” Moraes said.”

Marlon Moraes is fortunate to be fight in Brazil with his home country watching in attendance with captive attention, but there is one person in particular he hopes will be watching tonight:

“I want to perform. I want to do it well and I want to do it my way. I want to make my statement and surprising everybody. I want to show to people what they’ve never seen before and that’s how I’m going to send my message to T.J. Dillashaw.”

Who do you believe is a better matchup for Marlon Moraes: Dominick Cruz or Raphael Assuncao?

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