- Date & Location: Saturday Nov. 21 @ UFC Apex in Las Vegas
- Odds: Deiveson Figueiredo (-280) vs. Alex Perez (+250) via Bovada
- Prediction: Figueiredo by knockout
On November 21, Deiveson Figueiredo looks to make his first defense of the UFC flyweight title. Figueiredo had a chance to win the belt in February, but he missed weight for that fight. Had he made the championship weight of 125 pounds, Figueiredo would have taken the title home after he scored a TKO over Joseph Benavidez. The two meant again in July. Figueiredo made weight for that matchup and scored a first-round technical submission win. Figueiredo is on a four-fight winning streak.
Perez, who is the No. 4 ranked fighter in the official UFC flyweight rankings, is on a three-fight winning streak. His sole UFC loss came in 2018 when Benavidez scored a TKO win over Perez. Perez has finishes in his two most recent outings.
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FIGUEIREDO vs. PEREZ ODDS
|Fighter||Odds (via Bovada)|
FIGUEIREDO vs. PEREZ PREDICTION & PICK
I don’t know if the odds on this fight are as close as they should be. It might have something to do with the fact that Figueiredo ran over Joseph Benavidez while Benavidez knocked out Perez in the first round. But that ignores the fact that Perez earned a first-round TKO over Jussier Formiga, who is the only fighter with a win over Figueiredo. The fight against Formiga was Perez’s most recent victory.
Whatever the case, this should be an entertaining flyweight scrap between two relatively evenly matched competitors. Both men can handle themselves on the feet and on the mat. They can also finish from either position, as their 28 combined stoppage wins the show.
I believe the champion will keep his belt and I think it will be via knockout.
BETTING VALUE WITH FIGUEIREDO
Figueiredo has come pretty far from his time on the Brazilian scene where he was known as a wild pressure fighter. His style has become less reckless, but he has excellent power and he can use that power on his feet and on the mat. His movement is also a bit awkward and that can throw off his opponents and create space where he can unload his powerful strikes.
Perez recently said he expects a five-round war on the feet and he thinks both fighters are going to move forward. Perez might want to rethink that approach because I believe it will be to his detriment because of Figueiredo’s power.
WHO HAS THE EDGE?
Perez is a more active fighter on the feet, but he does not have the power of Figueiredo, who has nine career knockouts with four of those coming in the UFC. Perez gets hit more than Figueiredo and that’s not great because of the champ’s power. If the fight goes to the mat, both men are skilled on the ground, but Figueiredo is more aggressive working for submissions. Overall, Figueiredo is the more dangerous fighter. He has more tools to get the finish.
FIGHT STATS: FIGUEIREDO vs. PEREZ
|Deiveson Figueiredo||Category||Alex Perez|
|2.80||Significant Strikes Landed Per Minute||4.68|
|2.81||Significant Strikes Absorbed Per Minute||3.10|
|1.71||Takedown Average Per 15 Minutes||3.03|
|2.9||Submission Average Per 15 Minutes||1.4|
WHAT’S AT STAKE
The UFC flyweight division has had three champions. The first, Demetrious Johnson, defended the title a record 11 times. The second champ, Henry Cejudo, did not defend the title. Instead, he gave up the belt to focus on defending the bantamweight crown, which he also held. If Figueiredo wins, he will become the second UFC fighter to defend the 125-pound title.
For Perez, who is a replacement for ex-bantamweight champion Cody Garbrandt, this is a chance for him to win the title, but to also show the UFC that he should have earned the nod over Garbrandt, who had never fought at flyweight before getting a title shot.