Brandon Moreno Submits Deiveson Figueiredo to Become UFC Flyweight Champion

Brandon Moreno has gone and done it…

The 27-year-old Mexican professional mixed martial artist pulled off an upset win against Deiveson Figueiredo in dominant fashion at UFC 263 at Gila River Arena to become the UFC flyweight champion.

Brandon Moreno, Deiveson Figueiredo

Moreno submitted Figueiredo (20-2-1) via rear-naked choke at 2:26 of the third round.

Known as one of the most dangerous finishers in MMA, Figueiredo looked lost against Moreno, who was actually cut by UFC less than three years ago.

In winning, Moreno (19-5-2) became the first Mexican-born champion in UFC history.

“I can’t even believe it,” he said. “This is a real dream come true. I worked so hard for this belt. I have 10 years as a professional, 15 years training every single day. … This moment is so special. Not just for me, but for all my people, for my country, for my family, for my team … for everybody.”

Moreno looked on point from the moment the fight started. He calmly walked Figueiredo down with the jab and countered effectively when Figueiredo chose to throw his big shots. He dropped Figueiredo with a left hand in the opening round and had him badly hurt, but the Brazilian survived and made it to the next frame.

Figueiredo looked to switch things up and wrestle with Moreno in the second and third rounds, but Moreno was more than prepared. He countered with effective grappling and simply showed more hustle in certain moments. He won the majority of the scrambles and escaped any poor positions Figueiredo managed to get him in.

According to UFC Stats, Moreno out-landed Figueiredo in total strikes 47-24. He also scored two takedowns to Figueiredo’s one and racked up 4:49 of control time compared with 1:30 for Figueiredo.

“I have so much respect for Deiveson,” Moreno said. “Obviously, he tried to make it something special, to put more eyes in the fight, pushed me in the press conference, but actually, when he pushed me, I knew I won the fight. I won the fight there. My confidence was very high and he looked different. He didn’t want to look me in the eyes, he put his sunglasses on, he just looked different.”

It’s an amazing story of perseverance for Moreno, who was cut by the promotion in 2018 when the flyweight division as a whole was in jeopardy. Just last year, Moreno was skipped in line for a title shot by former bantamweight champion Cody Garbrandt, although Garbrandt was eventually pulled from that contest. He is 3-0-2 in his past five fights as a betting underdog.

Just 27, Moreno is still entering the prime of his career. For Figueiredo, it’s the first time he has been finished in his pro career and his first loss overall since 2019.

“I’m enjoying this moment because you never know what happens tomorrow, you never know what happens next month,” Moreno said.

Pepe Aguilar to Launch 15 New “Jaripeo Sin Fronteras” Tour Dates in September

Pepe Aguilar is expanding his North American presence…

After a successful U.S. and Mexico tour in 2018 and 2019, the 52-year-old Mexican-American singer-songwriter and actor will continue his Jaripeo Sin Fronteras tour with 15 new dates in 2021.

Pepe Aguilar

Conceptualized by the renowned Regional Mexican star himself, the family-friendly concert will have performances by Pepe, Angela Aguilar, Leonardo Aguilar, Antonio Aguilar Jr., Banda Sinaloense, Mariachi Zacatecano, rodeo acts, horse shows, charreria competition, bull riders, and more.

The 2021 tour, produced by Live Nation, will kick off on September 4 in Phoenix’s Gila River Arena, and wrap up on December 5 in San Jose’s SAP Center.

The Aguilar dynasty will also make pit stops in Atlanta, Chicago, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles, to name a few.

Combining traditional equestrianism with the latest technology like video, lasers, lights, and special effects, Pepe describes the tour as “a rock concert but with traditional content.”

“It’s basically a modular concept, where you can change the pieces,” Aguilar previously told Billboard of the family touring tradition. “The fundamental parts are the horse shows and the Mexican traditions.

Tickets for the 2021 Jaripeo Sin Fronteras tour will go on sale at noon local time on Friday, May 7, via

Here are the dates:

September 4 – Phoenix, AZ @ Gila River Arena
September 5 – Anaheim, CA @ Honda Center
September 10 – Salt Lake City, UT @ Maverik Center
September 17 – Oakland, CA @ Oakland Arena
September 19 -Fresno, CA @ Save Mart Center
September 25 – El Paso, TX @ El Paso Coliseum
October 1 – San Antonio, TX @ AT&T Center
October 3 – Edinburg, TX @ Bert Ogden Arena
October 8 – Atlanta, GA @ Infinite Energy Arena
October 10 – Chicago, IL @ United Center
October 24 – Dallas, TX @ American Airlines Center
November 6 – Los Angeles, CA @ Staples Center
November 20 – Las Vegas, NV @ MGM Grand Garden Arena
December 3 – Tacoma, WA @ Tacoma Dome
December 5 – San Jose, CA @ SAP Center

Raymundo Beltran to Defend His WBO Lightweight Title Against Roman Andreev

Raymundo Beltran is ready to defend his title…

The 36-year-old Mexican professional boxer, the reigning WBO lightweight word titleholder, will face Russian mandatory challenger Roman Andreev on August 25 at the Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona, not far from Beltran’s home base in Phoenix.

Raymundo Beltran / Ray Beltran

The fight, which will be the main event of a Top Rank Boxingon ESPN card, was squared away on Tuesday when Carl Moretti, vice president of Top Rank, which is Beltran’s promoter, won the purse bid for the fight with an offer of $252,000 at the WBO offices in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Top Rank was the only bidder. Andreev’s promoter, Patriot Promotions, did not attend the purse bid as it is not registered with the WBO and, therefore, was not eligible to bid on the fight.

Beltran is entitled to 75 percent of the bid ($189,000) and Andreev will receive 25 percent ($63,000).

“It’s probably a very tough and competitive fight,” Moretti said. “It’s probably the kind of all-action fight Ray Beltran is usually in. I don’t see this fight being much different than the usual fights Ray is in. Andreev is a strong, come-forward fighter with full intentions of winning the title and taking it back to Russia, which would not please [Top Rank chairman] Mr. [Bob] Arum.”

Beltran (35-7-1, 21 KOs won a vacant 135-pound world title in his fourth chance on February 16 when he outpointed Paulus Moses in a bruising battle in Reno, Nevada.

Beltran will be making his first defense against Andreev (21-0, 15 KOs).

Andreev, 32, who has not faced a top opponent in his 10-year career, will be fighting in the United States for the third time. He boxed in the U.S. twice in 2010, including on the Andre WardSakio Bika undercard in Oakland, California.

After Beltran won the belt and pound-for-pound king Vasiliy Lomachenko moved up in weight from junior lightweight and knocked out Jorge Linares on May 12 to win a lightweight world title, Top Rank planned to match them in a title unification bout on August 25.

However, Lomachenko suffered a torn labrum in the bout with Linares and had surgery. He will not be back in the ring until at least the fall. Top Rank then hoped to match Beltran with lightweight contender Jose Pedraza, a former junior lightweight world titlist it had recently signed. However, once the unification bout was off the table, Andreev’s camp pressed for the mandatory fight, according to Top Rank, and the WBO ordered the bout.

If Beltran wins on August 25, he could face Lomachenko near the end of the year in the unification fight. Moretti said that if Andreev wins he could be offered the unification fight.