UFC flyweight champion Deiveson Figueiredo does not believe Cody Garbrandt deserves a title shot.
Figueiredo finally achieved gold status off a brutal first-round submission win over Joseph Benavidez at UFC Fight Night: Figueiredo vs. Benavidez II. Former UFC bantamweight champion Cody Garbrandt has called for a title shot against Figueiredo, but the reigning champ is unsatisfied with that matchup.
“We want him to prove he can make 125 pounds and fight someone in my weight class,” Figueiredo said to MMA Fighting. “After that, if he wins, he can come fight me. But we don’t agree with him coming down and skipping the line and going straight for the belt against me. He needs to prove he can make 125 and fight someone. It would be unfair if the UFC puts him straight for the belt. I think the UFC has to respect the others that worked hard for a title shot.”
Garbrandt has competed professionally for nearly eight years as a professional MMA fighter and has never before dropped to flyweight. Figueiredo has a few other names in mind when it comes to who he should defend the flyweight title against.
“I think Brandon Moreno would be a great fight, or even [Askarov],” Figueiredo said. “It’s up to the UFC to decide which one is next. I guarantee you I can tell you right now what would happen. I would definitely submit Moreno, brother. And Askarov, I would knock him out just to show him my boxing is better.”
Outside of the aforementioned Benavidez, nobody in the flyweight top five ever fought for the UFC flyweight title.