Exclusive: Former UFC Title Challenger Marlon Moraes Opens Up on Parting Ways With UFC and PFL Future

Published 02/06/2023, 5:49 AM EST

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Not too long ago, Marlon Moraes proved that he is indeed one of the best in the bantamweight division. However, the Brazilian fighter had a tumultuous time after his title loss against Henry Cejudo. Moraes candidly talked about his loss and retirement in an exclusive interview with EssentiallySports’ Akshay Pallav. He had a tough time dealing with losing the Bantamweight title.

Moraes and Cejudo came face-to-face for the belt at UFC 238, which was held on 8th June 2019. ‘Magic’ indeed did his best in the first round, but Cejudo came back with stronger punches and bagged the title in the third round. Moraes tried his best to make himself better in his later fights, and his victory against Jose Aldo at UFC 245 was an example of the same. However, followed by the victory against Aldos, the Brazilian MMA fighter had to face streaks of failure, all by KO/TKO.

Marlon Moraes finally reveals the reason behind leaving the UFC


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During the candid conversation with EssentiallySports, the 34-year-old was asked about moving away from the promotion. The answer given by the Brazilian fighter finally revealed the reason behind the big move. He said “I was on the UFC and went all the way up to to fight for the belt. Unfortunately, I didn’t win and went to a losing streak in the UFC and I just didn’t see nowhere to go in the UFC. I just, I just didn’t have the motivation to start it, everything back in the UFC.” 

Moraes further detailed the great opportunity he received from the Professional Fighters League. He continued, “The PFL gave me that opportunity to reset, you know.” He added, “I started over, my last fight on PFL, uh didn’t come my way, but one thing I showed to everyone that I’m there and I am one of the most dangerous guys in that division.” 


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The first fight of ‘Magic’ at PFL

During the conversation, the Brazilian fighter talked about a wide range of subjects, including what fighting taught him, his retirement from UFC in 2022, his fight against Sheymon Moraes, and so on. Moraes admits that his rematch bout with Sheymon Moraes didn’t go well with him, unlike the first time where he won against Sheymon Moraes in WSOF. In the rematch at PFL, Marlon Moraes lost the fight in round three by technical knockout.

READ MORE: Former UFC Title Challenger Strongly Backs the “Great Opportunity” of Francis Ngannou Joining PFL


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Sheymon Moraes and the Brazilian fighter came face-to-face in November 2022. Magic was in full swing in the first two rounds, where his opponent had a hard time defending the strong strikes. Additionally, his takedowns were highly sharp. However, the game changed in round three, where a straight knock to the face of Marlon Moraes paved the way for his loss.

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One Take at a Time
Priyanka is a UFC writer at EssentiallySports. She has been an ardent fan of the UFC since 2018. She is passionate when it comes to writing about the sport and this is evident in her articles.
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Edited by

Rohini Kottu