Deiveson Figueiredo’s first Vegas journey: Two title fights, a bag of money and UFC historical past

Deiveson Figueiredo wanted lower than two minutes to submit Alex Perez on Nov. 21 on the UFC Apex in Las Vegas to retain his flyweight title. The plan was to return dwelling to Brazil shortly after the struggle, however then the whole lot modified — shortly.

Now, Figueiredo is ready to make UFC historical past.

Figueiredo’s first Vegas journey ended up being an prolonged keep as a result of the UFC supplied him a quick-turn struggle in opposition to Brandon Moreno, who additionally received by way of first-round stoppage at UFC 255 on Nov. 21. The 2 will headline Saturday’s UFC 256 card on the Apex.

Figueiredo will likely be making UFC historical past for the shortest span — 21 days — between title fights. The present file is 56 days, shared by Ronda Rousey and Matt Hughes.

This is a take a look at how the flashy Figueiredo, who’s from the small city of Soure, Brazil, spent a part of his three-week keep within the struggle capital of the world.

Saturday, Nov. 21: “I will struggle him subsequent week”

Just some minutes separated Figueiredo’s win over Perez and the beginning of the Moreno struggle promotion. Within the postfight interview with Joe Rogan, Figueiredo knew what he wanted to say, to his opponent and to UFC president Dana White.

“I am right here to problem Brandon Moreno,” Figueiredo stated by way of a translator. “Do you need to struggle me in December? I’m one of the best pound for pound, so I’m right here at your disposal.

“Come on, Dana, make this struggle occur in December.”

It did not take lengthy for Figueiredo to comprehend the UFC was pondering alongside the identical traces.

“When he received and did not get harm, Hunter [Campbell, UFC chief legal officer] got here as much as me and stated that Dana White wished him to struggle in December,” stated Figueiredo’s supervisor, Wallid Ismail. “I went to see Deiveson. ‘I am wonderful, I will struggle him subsequent week.’ That was Deiveson’s reply to me.”

The struggle was scheduled. White stated in the course of the postfight information convention that he wouldn’t let both of the 2 fighters go away Las Vegas.

“There was no option to say ‘no,’ as a result of he’s a man who fought in the identical occasion that I did,” Figueiredo stated. “We had a weight minimize, now we’ve to get better the physique and struggle once more.

“I’m prepared, I’m robust, you possibly can ensure that I’m able to go 5 rounds, even six. The UFC got here up with the concept, and I instantly accepted. I reside by battle.”

Sunday, Nov. 22: The break day

Figueiredo restricted himself to sooner or later of “whole free time,” as outlined by Ismail.

“We did the whole lot,” Ismail stated. “He lastly may purchase the toys he by no means had.”

Figueiredo, who estimated he spent about $5,000, and his crew toured Las Vegas and shopped. He added to his wardrobe, and loved totally different meals.

“I visited a beautiful mall right here within the metropolis,” Figueiredo stated. “I used to be capable of store. I even discovered a few salad that Wallid likes and I actually loved it. I’m dying to complete this struggle and return there to eat it once more. That was an enormous dish.”

Figueiredo went to The Venetian and ate at The Cheesecake Manufacturing unit, however no desserts had been ordered.

“He did not need to eat the cheesecake, so you possibly can see the mindset,” Wallid stated. “He ate a pizza on Saturday night time, however nothing too heavy. On Monday, he hadn’t gained that a lot weight.”

Monday, Nov. 23: The restoration

Figueiredo returned to coaching on the UFC Efficiency Institute, the place he began his week of restoration, guided by bodily coach Rogerio Melo.

From there, the champion’s routine could be: lodge to gymnasium, gymnasium to lodge, a minimum of two occasions a day. The primary days had been devoted to bodily restoration. The X’s and O’s of the struggle could be the main focus of the second week.

Whereas Figueiredo skilled, Ismail additionally had an vital mission: closing the ultimate particulars of the struggle. That day, he met with Campbell once more to signal the contracts.

And in addition to arrange a gathering with White.

Tuesday, Nov. 24: Bonus time

Regardless of his dominance over Perez, Figueiredo didn’t win one of many $50,000 performance-of-the-night bonuses.

He wasn’t completely satisfied, and he made his displeasure recognized in the course of the postfight information convention.

“I noticed all of the UFC fights that night time,” Figueiredo informed ESPN’s Ariel Helwani on Tuesday. “I assumed I did an ideal present for the general public. I assumed I deserved the bonus.

“Once I did not get it, I simply wished to go dwelling and chill out with my household.”

As a substitute, he had a private assembly with White three days after the struggle.

“My supervisor was informed that he would have a gathering with me personally,” Figueiredo stated. “He took me there, however no one knew it was concerning the bonus. We thought it was simply one other assembly to speak enterprise.”

There was a bag ready for Figueiredo.

“When he gave me that present, I used to be very completely satisfied,” Figueiredo stated. “He apologized to me for not giving me the bonus on the finish of the struggle, and he stated he had made a mistake and was criticized for it, however that he had acknowledged that mistake and was there to repair it.

“Once I opened the bag, it was a bag with cash.”

Friday, Nov. 27: Life-fulfilling information

Figueiredo all the time envisioned being a UFC champion, however that wasn’t his solely dream. He additionally wished his brother, Francisco, to affix him within the promotion. That got here true on Nov. 27 when the UFC signed Francisco, who is anticipated to debut in January.

“It was one of the best information I acquired right here in Las Vegas,” Deiveson stated. “On this rush to search out one other struggle, receiving this information gave me an additional impulse to coach much more. I’m additionally completely satisfied I can assist him for his debut.”

Deiveson lived with Francisco in Belem, Brazil, the place Deiveson had jobs as a sushi chef, hairdresser, security guard and fisherman.

“He stated that that is what was lacking in his life — his brother getting into the UFC,” Ismail stated. “That’s superior. He stated, ‘Will probably be good for my brother to struggle in January as a result of I’ll proceed coaching. I’ll arrive in Belem, to coach with him.’

“That is how Deiveson operates, he’s pondering forward. However in fact the principle focus now’s in direction of this struggle.”

Deiveson already has plans to return to motion in 2021, and he informed Helwani he needs to struggle former two-division champ Henry Cejudo subsequent.

Week 2: The load minimize

One of the vital difficult points of the short flip is chopping weight. Some consider it was a mistake for Tony Ferguson to chop weight twice in a month earlier than he misplaced to Justin Gaethje on Might 9.

However for Figueiredo, staying close to his preventing weight would possibly show useful.

“I all the time go up in a short time after the struggle, however now I needed to preserve the load for some time,” Figueiredo stated. “I actually hope it is going to be simpler. I’ve been coaching and burning energy for over three months. Now they’re simply liquids to take away, so it’s going to definitely be simpler.”

Figueiredo stated on Tuesday that he weighed 135 kilos, 10 kilos over the flyweight restrict, however one pound lower than he weighed on the Tuesday earlier than the Perez struggle.

“He continued with the food plan and has only a sensational biotype,” Wallid stated. “He even joked with me: ‘Typically it was 10 days earlier than the struggle and I used to be nonetheless consuming açaí earlier than touring. Right here I’m consuming with no salt, and I’m wonderful, superb!'”

Week 3: Struggle week

This week is rather like some other struggle week for Figueiredo. Whereas chopping the ultimate weight and making ready the technique to face Moreno, Figueiredo additionally has scheduled interviews with the media from world wide.

It is one thing he has gotten used to — and it’s even simpler as a result of he doesn’t need to journey this time.

Every little thing is on observe for the traditionally fast turnaround.

“I will enter with a aim: Put him down and submit him,” Figueiredo stated. “But when he chooses to commerce with me, I will do my greatest to knock him out. And nonetheless within the first spherical.”

In different phrases, fast work.

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