The opening early prelim fight at UFC 291 was marred by a bit of controversy. Female flyweights Miranda Maverick and Priscilla Cachoeira kicked off the night’s festivities, with the former winning via third-round submission.
But Maverick’s road to victory didn’t come without challenges. As seen in the video below, Cachoeira is believed to have used some dirty tactics, a reputation she’d built for herself (whether deliberately or not) based on previous actions.
Cachoeira accused of intentionally exposing opponent’s breasts at UFC 291
A Twitter user posted a video showing portions of UFC 291’s bout between Maverick and Cachoeira. As the clip shows, Cachoeira violently tugged on Maverick’s top as she was trapped in side control and taking elbow strikes.
Maverick believes it should’ve been a point deduction. According to her, Cachoeira had been playing a little dirty throughout the fight.
“At some point, you gotta say it’s a point (deduction). She stuck her fingers up straight the entire fight, pretty much,” she told reporters during the UFC 291 post-fight media scrum.
“And there was no chance that she was just trying to push me off. There was no flat hands.
“I hope that the whole world didn’t see me, but they probably did. And I guess that’s part of the risk of fighting. But it was very frustrating and it made me go in there much angrier every round.”
Cachoeira has a history of fouls before UFC 291
This isn’t the first time Cachoeira caught flak for supposed intentional fouls during a fight. Another notable moment happened at UFC 269 in late 2021, when she fought Gillian Robertson.
As Robertson had back control and attempted a rear-naked choke, Cachoeira tried to defend by sticking a thumb in one of Robertson’s eyes, something that most observers deemed blatant.
Ahead of UFC 291, Maverick knew what she was getting into with Cachoeira as an opponent.
“Went in there cautious, knowing that she’s also had some times that were questionable in fights. Protect my eyes, protect everything. Hands got stuck where they shouldn’t have multiple times, which was kind of frustrating.
“But I wanted to soften her up, make sure I didn’t have to worry about anything by the time I went for a submission,” she said.
Maverick says she had to personally speak with the referee before the fight to issue a warning about Cachoeira’s history of fouls.
“I had warned the ref beforehand, and to be honest, I think he did about a good of a job as I’ve seen any ref do. I said, ‘Listen, I don’t want to be poked in the eyes in this fight.’ That was my main priority. And he was like, ‘We’ll watch out for it.’
“There’s always concerns, especially with this opponent. My dad was, like, ‘I’m gonna jump over the cage if she pokes you in the eye.’ And the Gillian Robertson fight, it was very intentional. She tried to literally gouge her eyes out.
“I had retina surgeries in the past. I don’t really want to go blind in this sport. Although I love it and have given it my all every time, I don’t really want them to take my eyes from me in the process.”
Maverick and Cachoeira’s records after UFC 291
Cachoeira was on a two-fight win streak ahead of the Maverick fight. After Saturday night, she dropped to a record of 12-5.
As for Maverick, she bounced back from her previous loss at UFC 289, as he improved to the same win-loss slate of 12-5.
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