Marlon Moraes had ‘nowhere to go’ in the UFC before joining PFL’s $1m season
MARLON MORAES is pursuing the Professional Fighters League’s prize belt and $1million cheque with a fresh mind after growing stale in the UFC.
The Brazilian spent five years in the UFC, challenging for the bantamweight title in 2017 but losing to American legend Henry Cejudo.
And after a run of four straight losses, Moraes left to explore other avenues and was signed by the PFL.
The MMA league is the sport’s only seasonal format, consisting of qualifying and knockout stages.
Points are earned per method of victory in the opening two bouts with the top four in each weight progressing into the semi-finals.
From there, it is victory-or-go-home culminating in a winner-take-all finale fight where a title belt and $1m cash prize lays in wait.
Moraes, 34, faces reigning featherweight champion Brendan Loughnane, 33, in Saturday’s Las Vegas season opener.
He told SunSport: “This is a great opportunity to compete in a different format with a few fights a year.
“You have the chance to win a championship at the end of the season and $1million.
“It’s a great opportunity, it’s an opportunity to be active all year, fight four times. It’s money that can change people’s lives. I’m very excited.
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“Especially to fight, the money is amazing but the feeling of winning, the feeling of finishing people is what I’m looking for.
“For me, I like to train, I live in the gym so it’s amazing to have the chance to compete more times a year.”
Moraes made his PFL debut last year in an undercard bout, losing to countryman Sheymon Moraes, 32, by stoppage.
But he returns to the cage ready to embark on a journey to the $1m prize having left behind a career in the UFC.
Moraes said: “I felt there was nowhere to go and that’s why I decided to take a break. For me, that was the best decision I made.
It’s a great opportunity, it’s an opportunity to be active all year, fight four times. It’s money that can change people’s lives. I’m very excited.
Marlon Moraes on the PFL season
“I never got an easy fight in the UFC and I wasn’t going to get a comeback fight, so the best thing I did was move to the PFL and started all over.
“I have a few years in me and starting all over with the PFL is the best decision I’ve done in my life.
Moraes is one of the most recognisable names in this year’s season but he insists there is still more to show in the cage.
He said: “If I’m competing, I still have something to prove.
“If you’re in the game, still competing and willing to risk, there is always something to prove.
“I’ve been very happy in my career with all my accomplishments but 2023, I want to leave it all on the line.
“I’ve still got a lot to do and the time is now. The 2023 season, I’m very excited to fight all these guys and put it on the line.
“I love this sport and I want to give back to the fans, all the support I’ve had in my career.”
Source: The Sun
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