Steve Erceg On Potential Alexandre Pantoja Rematch: ‘I Don’t Know What I’m Going To Do If Some Other Guy Can Beat Him…’

The learning curve once a fighter joins the UFC roster roster can often be a steep one. Many fighters take some time to find their feet and work their way toward chasing a spot inside the rankings, and dreams of fighting for a title often have to be put on hold while they settle into the big leagues and slowly carve out a name for themselves.

Not so for Steve Erceg.

The Australian flyweight, who is set to face Kai Kara-France at UFC 305 later this summer, only made his debut inside the Octagon in June 2023 when he beat David Dvořák by unanimous decision in Canada at UFC 289. He followed that up with another win at UFC 295 against Alessandro Costa, before picking up a highlight reel knockout of Matt Schnell in March of this year.

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In a surprising turn of events, the 28-year-old was drafted in to fight Alexandre Pantoja for the flyweight title in the main event of UFC 301 in Rio De Janeiro just two months later. While the fight didn’t go his way, “AstroBoy” believes the experience will stand him in good stead going forward.

“I feel like more people know who I am now,” Erceg said during an interview with Submission Radio this week. “That’s obviously good for getting big fights and opportunities, so that’s great, and I found out that I can hang at that level.

“He’s beat a lot of contenders, basically everybody in the division, so the fact that I was able to hang there for five rounds, and I felt that I was the one coming over the top at the end…that was awesome. It just obviously sucks that I have to look at his record now with my name associated with it, but whatever.”

Erceg Aiming For Rematch With Pantoja Post-UFC 305

Erceg was also asked whether he thinks a rematch could be on the cards, and if he believes Pantoja will still be the one holding the belt by the time he’s able to work his way back into title contention.

“I really hope he’s still the champion because I don’t know what I’m gonna do if some other guy can beat him and I f**kin’ couldn’t. … I don’t like to swear, but…yeah, so I’d prefer if it was him at the top still. We’ll sort it out.”

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