UFC Flyweight Champion Deiveson Figueiredo has doubled down on talk of a potential bantamweight transition, revealing a timeline and targeted opponent.
Figueiredo is currently in the midst of his second reign on the 125-pound throne. After losing the belt to Brandon Moreno via submission last June, the Brazilian exacted revenge seven months later, recording a unanimous decision victory over the Mexican in their trilogy fight at UFC 270.
But despite that, all is not well between the champ and the UFC. With Figueiredo expected to be out until the backend of 2022 through a hand injury, the promotion announced the creation of an interim belt, which is to be fought for by Moreno and Kai Kara-France at UFC 277 next month.
In response, Figueiredo expressed his disdain at the decision last month, admitting that he’s even thinking of leaving the division as a result.
While cooler heads have appeared to somewhat prevail and the flyweight king isn’t thinking of abandoning the weight class just yet, the idea of a bantamweight transition is certainly not a far-off prospect for “Deus Da Guerra.”
Figueiredo Still Looks To Ditch FW Cut For BW Glory
During a recent appearance on Combate’s Mundo da Luta podcast, Figueiredo discussed his future plans in the UFC.
The Brazilian, whose struggles in making the flyweight limit have become public knowledge, admitted that the heavy weight cut will soon become too much for him. With that, “Deus Da Guerra” is targeting a few more defenses across the next year before making the move up to 135 pounds.
“I can’t make it to the age of 35 cutting weight at flyweight. It won’t give any more,” said Figueiredo. ” I plan on making two or three more belt defenses in a year, and then moving up to bantamweight. For what I represent, I think I deserve to get there fighting for the belt.”
When he arrives, Figueiredo will have his sights set on the gold, which is currently held by Aljamain Sterling. But according to the flyweight champ, “Funk Master” wouldn’t want to face him.
“I want to face the champion, Aljamain Sterling. I see fear in his eyes,” said Figueiredo. “I know he doesn’t want to face me, and I’m sure we’ll have a great fight and I’ll be champion when that happens.” (h/t Sportskeeda)
Sterling won the belt via disqualification last March and legitimized his rule earlier this year by recording an upset victory over former champ Petr Yan. He’s expected to defend the belt against TJ Dillashaw next, a bout that is being targeted for UFC 279 in September.
Should both Sterling and Figueiredo continue to rule over their respective divisions, perhaps a future showdown will come to fruition, with “Deus Da Guerra” having the opportunity to become the UFC’s latest two-weight champion.
How do you think a fight between Deiveson Figueiredo and Aljamain Sterling would play out?