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Antonio Carlos Jr. Hopes for $1 Million PFL Clash vs. ATT Teammate Josh Silveira



After a two-year absence due to multiple knee surgeries, former Professional Fighters League light heavyweight champion Antonio Carlos Jr. made a successful return to the cage in April, submitting Simon Biyong in the opening stanza at PFL 2 on April 12.

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While that earned “Cara de Sapato” six points in the PFL standings, four other light heavyweights earned quicker finishes than the Brazilian at the event. That means Carlos Jr. enters his PFL 5 matchup with Alex Polizzi in fifth place, so he will need another impressive showing to assure himself a place in the postseason.

“It never happened in PFL history. Five fighters getting a quick six in the first phase. Nobody is guaranteed [a spot] in the playoffs. It´s like we are all starting now,” Carlos Jr. told Sherdog.com.

Carlos Jr. expects Polizzi to try to use his wrestling to control their fight at the Huntsman Center in Salt Lake City.

"He has an excellent folk wrestling technique and probably will try to take me down, but that's the position where I feel more comfortable,” said Carlos Jr., who revealed that he and American Top Team training partner Joshua Silveira arrived one week early to adapt to the altitude in Utah.

Carlos Jr. realizes there is a chance he will have to square off against Silveira in the postseason if all goes as planned for both ATT-based light heavyweights. The UFC veteran is prepared for that possibility.

"Of course the best scenario would be to face Joshua in the final and have the million-dollar dispute inside the American Top Team,” Carlos Jr. said. “But for now, we both have very tough challenges and we are not thinking about that.”

Carlos Jr. had high praise for another training partner, Ikram Aliskerov. Aliskerov will face Robert Whittaker on short notice in the UFC on ABC 6 headliner on Saturday in Saudi Arabia.

"We have the same manager, Ali [Abdelaziz]. Since the first sparring we did, I told Ali that this Russian will be a future champion,” Carlos Jr. said. “Ikram is good everywhere. When I was in the UFC I always said Whittaker was the worst matchup for me. Even Adesanya would be a better fit for my game. But I see Whittaker and Ikram having a war, which is hard to predict the winner, but I have no doubt Ikram will give him a hard time.”
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