Tuesday, July 5, 2022

Alexandre Pantoja Calls for Interim Flyweight Title Fight

Deiveison Figueiredo recently commented that a victory over Alexandre Pantoja at UFC 240 should earn him an interim title fight against current #1 contender Joseph Benavidez. And now, Pantoja has chimed in with a ‘That goes for me, too’:

“If I win this fight, I want Benavidez,” Pantoja told MMA Junkie. “I think if Benavidez wants to fight Cejudo, he needs to fight me first. I want to fight Cejudo now. I think it’s a great opportunity to fight an Olympic gold medalist and a guy that has two belts.”

Pantoja is not underestimating Figueiredo, who only just loss his first professional fight earlier this year to Jussier Formiga. In a way, Pantoja considers this fight to be a title fight in and of itself, seeing as how a victory ultimately leads to the same goal all the same:

“Deiveison is a tough opponent,” Pantoja said. “He’s a very dangerous guy. He’s like a Brazilian warrior, like an old-school fighter. I’ve been training all my life for this fight.

“I think all the fights are for the belt because you need step after step to win. If I win this fight, I think I need to fight Benavidez for the interim belt and wait for Cejudo to come back.”

And when Cejudo does return, if his comeback turns out to be against Alexandre Pantoja, it will be a case of buddy vs. buddy:

“Cejudo is a good friend, I love this guy,” Pantoja said. “I learned a lot from Cejudo – not just game, but mentality. I have this fight on Saturday, and I need to prove that I’m ready for Benavidez.

“All respect to Benavidez, but I’m feeling ready for the title, and I need to fight Benavidez.”

Do you believe Alexandre Pantoja should fight Joseph Benavidez in an interim flyweight title fight if he defeats Deiveison Figueiredo at UFC 240?

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