UFC fighter hints he’s next
There are a lot of tasty UFC title fights on the horizon. Next weekend we have Israel Adesanya defending his middleweight belt against Sean Strickland. After that we have Islam Makhachev rematching Charles Oliveira over the lightweight belt. And beyond that we’ve got Jon Jones defending the heavyweight strap, for the first time, against Stipe Miocic.
The UFC flyweight title will never be contested with the same sort of fanfare as those belts mentioned above. But if you had to bet on which belt would inspire the most thrilling fight, the flyweight title would be a pretty smart wager.
Alexandre Pantoja currently holds the belt after he won a sensational decision over Brandon Moreno at UFC 290 in July. It wouldn’t be surprising if the Dana White and his pals put Moreno in an immediate rematch with Pantoja, like they did when he lost to Deiveson Figueiredo (or like they did when Figueiredo lost to Moreno).
But no, it seems as if we have a different match-up planned for Pantoja’s first defence – that’s if the fourth ranked flyweight Brandon Royval can be believed.
Royval put a post on Instagram heavily suggesting he had been given a UFC title shot.
“Just waiting on a date, stay healthy champ. Excited to share the cage with you again,” wrote Royval. Followed by “And new…”
That streak started after back-to-back losses to Pantoja (via submission) and Moreno (via TKO).
What’s the promotion saying?
Bloody Elbow reached out to the UFC and asked if Royval will be fighting Pantoja. The UFC is yet to respond to that request.
Could Royval be playing a move out of Conor McGregor’s playbook? The Notorious Irishman recently tweeted out a fake fight announcement in an attempt to force the UFC’s hand in booking the bout when and where he wanted.
Seems pretty unlikely that Royval would be so bold as to try that move at this stage of his career.
We’ll have to just wait and see if Royval is the official next challenger at 125 lbs.
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