Both times that they have competed against one another, Brandon Moreno has been defeated by Alexandre Pantoja. The first loss was not officially counted because it occurred by submission on The Ultimate Fighter: Tournament of Champions. The second loss, however, was counted and occurred via unanimous decision at UFC Fight Night 129.
The reigning flyweight champion recently revealed what he thinks would change his fortunes against Pantoja in their next title fight for the championship. During an interview with Ariel Helwani on the podcast The MMA Hour, ‘The Assassin Baby’ stated:
“I can talk about a lot of other aspects, such as the technical part, the mental element, or everything else, but the true difference for this fight will be that I’m a better athlete. I am a better athlete, and on July 8 I will demonstrate it to everyone.”
“I’ve said this before, and I’m going to say it right now, he never fought against the best Brandon Moreno in that moment when we fought each other, but right now I’m just focused on him,” Moreno said. “I’ve said this before, and I’m going to say it right now.” I’m only practicing in preparation for him. I’m going to handle the game plan for him. I’m good to go, man.”
Below are some statements that Brandon Moreno has made on Alexandre Pantoja:
According to Brandon Moreno, Alexandre Pantoja has not yet faced “the best” version of Moreno in a fight. #TheMMAHour
“The real difference for this fight will be that I am a better athlete,” said the challenger.
Despite the fact that Moreno has been defeated twice by Pantoja, the champion has only dropped one of his last 10 battles. On the other side, the No. 2-ranked flyweight has won his most recent three fights and will get his first chance to challenge for the crown.
Brandon Moreno hopes to face Henry Cejudo following title defense
After losing the bantamweight title battle against Aljamain Sterling at UFC 288, Henry Cejudo gave the impression that he is once again considering retiring from the sport. Brandon Moreno, who had a public spat with ‘Triple C,’ posted a message on Instagram urging the former double champion not to retire, in which he stated:
“@henry_cejudo don’t retire just yet, please wait for me, I’m going to win my fight in July, and then we can finish business, main event in Mexico City, I go to 135 pounds, fuck belts, just you and me in the octagon!!” Henry Cejudo tweeted to Conor McGregor. “Don’t retire just yet, please wait for me.”
Check out the following post that Brandon Moreno has made on Instagram:
In a conversation with Danny Segura of MMA Junkie, ‘The Assassin Baby’ reaffirmed his wish to compete against his former training partner turned adversary:
“I don’t want to treat (Pantoja) in any way that would be disrespectful. I simply made the comment because Henry was stating that he didn’t know what was going to happen, and that he could retire, and all I wanted to do was plant the seed like, ‘Hey, don’t go just yet.’ the’s why I said it. But other than that, I don’t have much more to say, so please just wait for me and give me a chance. Because he presents such a significant obstacle, I must direct all of my attention toward Alexandre.
See what Brandon Moreno has to say about Henry Cejudo in the video that follows (beginning at the 31:09 mark):
As a result of Cejudo’s decision to include Pantoja on his team for The Ultimate Fighter: Tournament of Champions rather than Moreno, the two competitors no longer speak to one another. At the upcoming UFC 290 event, the flyweight champion will make a defense of his championship. At the same time, it appears that the former double champion will meet Marlon ‘Chito’ Vera at UFC 292.