Brandon Moreno is looking to become the first Mexican fighter to win UFC gold this weekend. In a short-notice title fight against Deiveson Figueiredo (short notice for both men, all of 21 days after their UFC 255 appearances), he’ll look to play spoiler with the flyweight title on the line.
“Different, you know? So magical. I’ve had so much emotions these three weekends,” Moreno described the feeling ahead of his title opportunity. Speaking at the UFC 256 media day, Moreno went on to explain what being the first Mexican fighter — born, raised, and still fighting out of the nation — to win UFC gold would mean to him.
“Everything brother. I’ve said it before, but this moment and this opportunity is bigger than me,” he explained. “It’s not just me, it’s my family, my three daughters, my wife, my parents. All who sacrificed to get me the best opportunities to stay in this place right now, talking with you.”
Moreno, who just turned 27-years old, and had to settle with chicken breasts and vegetables rather than cake thanks to the upcoming title bout, continued by saying that “it’s important for my country: I can change the game. I can change the sport, if they [Mexican fans] have an important guy winning a title in the most important company in mixed martial arts at this moment. I can change so much stuff if I get the title.”
“I know I can be an example for all these young kids who try to start in this sport,” Moreno later added. “I can show to the world, not just Mexico, the world — Latin America in general, we can do it.” Of course, he’s already making history as the first Mexican-born UFC fighter to challenge for a belt, but “it’s not complete. It’s not everything. I need to get that title.”
The UFC has long looked for a way to connect with the massive combat sports fanbase in Mexico. After being cut from the UFC in 2018 only to make a surprise return a year later, perhaps Brandon Moreno can be the man to help push the sport to the next level in his home country.
Watch the full UFC 256 virtual media day pres scrum with Brandon Moreno above. The event takes place this Saturday, December 12 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, NV.