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Thiago Moises, Using Frustration as Fuel



Ever since he punched his ticket to the UFC as a 23-year-old on Dana White's Contender Series, Thiago Moises has been on a wild ride, one which started when he was thrown into the deep end of the pool for his very first fight.

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“My UFC debut was against Beneil Dariush. He may fight for the belt in the near future,” Moises pointed out in an interview with Sherdog. He acquitted himself well against Dariush in a competitive decision loss, kicking off a UFC run that has seen Moises develop under the bright Octagon lights, winning his way from prospect to contender. As he prepares to face Christos Giagos on Saturday at UFC on ESPN 38, however, Moises is looking to rebound from the first back-to-back losses of his career.

“Since [the Dariush fight] there were some highs and lows,” the now 27-year-old lightweight said. “I managed a three-win streak against very tough opponents – Michael Johnson, Bobby Green and Alexander Hernandez. I made it to the No. 14 contender spot in the UFC. More recently, I’ve had two less-than-positive results. I want to use those experiences as fuel. I’m correcting the errors I made in those last two bouts. I’m training and evolving each day, so I can bring that into the Octagon. My hunger to win is greater than ever. I’m working with my team, so I can go on another winning streak – same as 2020 through 2021.”

Moises approaches “UFC Vegas 57” with a healthy respect for his foe; his assessment of Giagos indicates that he has done his due diligence. “Christos Giagos is a dangerous opponent,” he said. “He has wins via striking, submission, and decision. He first joined the UFC in 2014, was let go, and went on to rack up some wins in Russia. Russia is a really difficult place in which to fight. It’s hard to get a win over there. He was able to show his quality as a fighter. I respect him a lot. But once I see him in the Octagon, if I give my best, I know it will be enough for me to get the win.”

Preparation for his upcoming fight finds Moises, as usual, at American Top Team, where he surrounds himself with ATT’s experienced coaching staff and a bevy of current and former UFC fighters with whom to train. “Giagos is very experienced,” Moises said. “He fights as well on the feet as on the ground. He does a little of everything. But he has several holes in his game. I’ll be looking to take advantage of that. My team is helping me get ready with both his weak and strong points in mind. I’ve been getting a lot of help from Joaquim ‘Netto BJJ’ Silva and Grant Dawson.”

Moises’ future plans do not include looking past Giagos, but he does admit to a wish to return to the busy schedule that characterized his earlier UFC run. “I had been fighting very frequently up to now,” he said. “This time it will be over seven months between bouts. I’d like to reach my goal of fighting two more times before the end of the year. Hopefully this way I can finish out the year back in the Top 15. I’d like to thank all my fans for their love. You can expect to see a very determined Thiago. We’ll have a war inside the Octagon on June 25.”
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