Undisputed flyweight championship holder, Brandon Moreno is closing as a betting favorite to not just successfully defend and retain his crown during International Fight Week at UFC 290 next month, but also avenge a pair of prior losses to Brazilian contender, Alexandre Pantoja.
Moreno, the current undisputed flyweight champion, co-headlined UFC 283 in Brazil back in January of this year on enemy territory – successfully reclaiming his status as undisputed flyweight champion with a title unification win against Deiveson Figueiredo in Rio de Janeiro.
As for Pantoja, the Brazilian title challenger has enjoyed a winning run spanning the course of three fights en route to the #2 rank in the official flyweight rankings under the banner of the UFC.
Last time out, the Rio de Janeiro native featured at UFC 277 in July of last year, submitting former title challenger, Alex Perez with a first round rear-naked choke submission win.
And holding an Ultimate Fighter exhibition win over Brandon Moreno, as well as a UFC triumph against the Baja Californian – Pantoja still, however, is closing as a sizeable +145 underdog to defeat the -170 betting favorite, Moreno at UFC 290 next month during International Fight Week.
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Setting up an unprecedented fourth title fight with Figueiredo back in January of this year, Brandon Moreno also featured on that aforenoted UFC 277 card last summer akin to Pantoja – himself winning an interim flyweight title with a brutal body kick and strikes KO win over recent headliner, Kai Kara-France.
First winning undisputed flyweight gold in 2021, Moreno became the first champion hailing from Mexico under the UFC banner, submitting Figueiredo with a rear-naked choke in Glendale, Arizona to a massive crowd reaction.
However, ahead of his third combat sports outing with Pantoja next month, Brandon Moreno enters his first attempted title defense of his second undisputed reign with the prior knowledge of two prior defeats to the Brazilian.
First sharing the Octagon at The Ultimate Fighter 24 back in 2016, Brandon Moreno was submitted with a second round rear-naked choke by Pantoja on the reality television show.
Rekindling their rivalry at UFC Fight Night Santiago in Chile back in May 2019, Brandon Moreno again found himself on the wrong side of the winning equation against the former, dropping a unanimous decision loss to the Brazilian challenger.
Himself suffering losses to common-foes, Figueiredo, and Askar Askarov during his UFC tenure – as well as Dustin Ortiz, in between those losses, Pantoja has racked up wins over a who’s who of talent including the likes of Kara-France, Brandon Royval, Manel Kape, Matt Schnell, Neil Seery, and former title challenger, Wilson Reis.
A renowned finisher boasting an impressive 25-5 professional record, Pantoja has secured a resounding 10 separate submission triumphs, as well as eight separate knockouts over the course of his professional mixed martial arts career. Pantoja was eliminated from TUF 24 at the semi-final bracket, losing out to Japanese favorite, Hiromasa Ougikubo in a decision defeat.