For the second time in his fighting career, Alexandre Pantoja was victorious against Brandon Moreno – only this time, it was official.
The former Resurrection Fighting Alliance champion earned a unanimous verdict over Moreno in a preliminary flyweight bout at UFC Fight Night 129 in Santiago, Chile, on Saturday night. “The Cannibal” punished his adversary with combination punches and leg kicks, bloodying Moreno’s nose early in the contest. Moreno, who entered the matchup ranked above Pantoja, never mounted a serious threat during the 15-minute affair.
Pantoja and Moreno previously squared off in the opening round of “The Ultimate Fighter 24,” with Pantoja winning via rear-naked choke in the second frame of their exhibition contest. Since Pantoja couldn’t get the desired finish this time around, his goal was to inflict as much punishment as possible.
"If I could not finish by finishing or knocking out, I can be quite honest that I tried to ruin him as much as possible so he did not come back in the second round, but he's a hearty fighter and he came back in the second round," Pantoja said in a backstage interview posted by the UFC. "In the struggle we flee in the rational way and take what we have inside us, which is an animal side. We stop being a little human, so I went with one of the most primitive instincts that I had to try to finish the fight anyway. Now that it's over, I'm sorry for what happened to him and I hope he gets better fast and come back soon to fight.”
Pantoja has won three of his four Octagon appearances, with his only defeat coming at the hands of Dustin Ortiz. The Nova Uniao member is 19-3 over the course of his professional career.