In recent years, the UFC was believed by many to be all but set on eliminating its flyweight division. Now, UFC president Dana White is certainly glad he didn't go through with that decision.
On Saturday night, flyweight champion Deiveson Figueiredo and challenger Brandon Moreno put on an instant classic at UFC 256 in Las Vegas. The back-and-forth bout was scored a majority draw, with Figueiredo keeping the title. When it was over, play-by-play man Jon Anik said on the ESPN+ pay-per-view broadcast that White told Moreno the fight was the best he has seen in the history of the 125-pound division. It's a point difficult to argue and perhaps made more impressive with both fighters having competed just three weeks ago.
The fighters traded heavy shots throughout the five-round battle, which saw Figueiredo come out strong but appear to tire in the later rounds. His kick below the belt in the third round would ultimately cost him the victory. It dropped Moreno to the mat, and as he recovered, referee Jason Herzog deducted a point from Figueiredo for the foul.
That indeed was unfortunate, but it didn't take away from the intensity of the contest. Numerous UFC fighters, past and present, took to social media immediately after the fight to salute both competitors, with some calling for a rematch while others disagreed with the point deduction.
Both are champions— The Diamond (@DustinPoirier) December 13, 2020
Good fight shoutout to— Nathan Diaz (@NateDiaz209) December 13, 2020
Brandon Moreno 👊🏼
Say my name lord of the ringworm @Daico_Deiveson 🏆🏆🏆— Henry Cejudo (@HenryCejudo) December 13, 2020
That is a little excessive to take a point without a warning. What do you guys think?— Chuck Liddell (@ChuckLiddell) December 13, 2020
Damn that's an important point. Don't know that I agree with it— Funky (@Benaskren) December 13, 2020
A lot of us are talking about this being Fight of the Year but we should also be talking about Deiveson Figueiredo being Fighter of the Year. Even though this was a draw, he still walked away with the title after a record breaking 2020.#UFC254— Michael Chiesa (@MikeMav22) December 13, 2020
Amazing fight I need to see these guys go at it again ..then again after that— Belal Muhammad (@bullyb170) December 13, 2020
That could very well be FOTY #UFC256— #OnAmission4Gold (@KelvinGastelum) December 13, 2020
They gotta run this back!! #UFC256— Anthony Pettis (@Showtimepettis) December 13, 2020
What a great display of technique and heart. The flyweight division is full steam ahead! Run that one back! #ufc256— Michael Chandler (@MikeChandlerMMA) December 13, 2020
Wow I thought Moreno had it #ufc256— Katlyn Chookagian (@blondefighter) December 13, 2020