UFC Flyweight Champion Brandon Moreno believes the hype surrounding Cody Garbrandt‘s move to 125 pounds may have been too much for him.
Moreno is set to face former champion Deiveson Figueiredo at UFC 270 in their trilogy. He earned the belt over Figueiredo in their last matchup at UFC 263 via submission.
Moreno understands the ups and downs of the fight game better than most. He went from falling short of The Ultimate Fighter title to winning a championship belt on MMA’s biggest platform.
One of the biggest storylines in his division as of late was the addition of Garbrandt, a former bantamweight champion who entered the flyweight division with expectations. His flyweight debut didn’t go according to plan as he lost via first-round TKO to Kai Kara-France at UFC 269.
Garbrandt’s loss to Kara-France was his fifth over his last six bouts. During a recent interview with MMA Junkie’s Danny Segura, Moreno gave his thoughts on Garbrandt’s troubles in the Octagon.
“It was sad,” Moreno said. “You get carried away by the hype because they start doing all the promos, and they start promoting Cody Garbrandt, and you kind of start believing like, ‘Hey, he could be something interesting in the division.’
“But then what happened happened, and you start reflecting on a sober mind. It was a tough scene for Cody. He was knocked out at 135 pounds. His chin was touched. He cuts the weight – who knows how the brain was? Then you give him a Kai Kara-France, who hits very hard, and I know it because I already fought him. It wasn’t a good situation for him, and it’s sad.” (h/t Bloody Elbow)
Moreno isn’t the only big-name fighter to express sympathy for Garbrandt. Rising bantamweight contender Sean O’Malley went from talking trash to saying he felt bad for Garbrandt in weeks.
Despite his losing skid, Garbrandt has remained optimistic regarding his future at 125 pounds and beyond. A matchup between Moreno and Garbrandt is still possible down the line, depending on how their next Octagon appearances play out.
What do you think Cody Garbrandt should do next?