UFC 255 Predictions: Deiveson Figueiredo Succeeds in 1st Flyweight Title Defense vs. Alex Perez
Deiveson Figueiredo will defend his flyweight championship for the first time when he faces Alex Perez in the co-main event of UFC 255 on Saturday (November 21).
Their bout will serve as one of two flyweight title deciders on the evening, with women’s champion Valentina Shevchenko a lopsided favorite in her defense against Jennifer Maia:
It was confirmed in early October that Perez (24-5) would replace Cody Garbrandt as challenger for Figueiredo’s first flyweight title defense, the former bowing out due to a torn bicep.
The odds reflect the difference in pedigree between those two contenders as “Deus Da Guerra” (God of War) comes in as -313 moneyline favorite at bet365. New Jersey customers can alternatively get behind Perez as +250 underdog, but the form books suggest Figueiredo may reign as king of this division for years to come.
Earlier in November, this writer’s temptation was to think Californian Perez looked good for the upset in Las Vegas, but further study of Figueiredo (19-1) has only reinforced belief in his considerable talents. A Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt with nine knockout finishes in his 20 professional fights—including three finishes from his last three outings—makes it difficult to see where Figueiredo can be beaten.
The 32-year-old has less fight experience despite being four years older than Perez, but one of Figueiredo’s most endearing traits is the fact he’s displayed such improvement over time. His single career loss came against Jussier Formiga—whom Perez defeated in his last bout—in March 2019, but the Brazilian has fought four times since then and looked better on each occasion:
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Borgata does not fancy the main event to see out all five rounds, with the fight priced at -477 to finish before the final bell. That single bet doesn’t bring much value, but when combined as a parlay with fellow UFC 255 participants Louis Cosce and Daniel Rodriguez—big favorites against Sasha Palatnikov and Nicolas Dalby, respectively—the -106 yield looks a lot more tempting.
Aside from skills alone, Figueiredo has a chance to keep Perez at bay with a three-inch reach advantage, and his displays of stamina to date lead one to believe he’s capable at the five-round range.
Three of Perez’s five career defeats have come thanks to submission, and Borgata NJ’s +470 price for BJJ black belt Figueiredo to triumph via those means seem too good to pass up. The defending champion is highly fancied to end the fight with strikes—priced at -112 for the KO/TKO win—but it’s foreseeable his power punches could lead to big opportunities on the ground.
Figueiredo vs. Perez Moneyline Odds & Prediction: Figueiredo via submission
- Deiveson Figueiredo: -313
- Alex Perez: +250