Brandon Royval believes Alexandre Pantoja could make a similar mistake that Aljamain Sterling did against Sean O’Malley.
On August 19, O’Malley finished Sterling with a second-round TKO to become the new UFC bantamweight champion. The fight-ending sequence featured ‘Sugar’ landing a counter right hand before following up with ground and pound.
Meanwhile, Royval will fight Pantoja for the UFC flyweight title on December 16. During an exclusive interview with MiddleEasy’s James Lynch, ‘Raw Dawg’ was asked about O’Malley’s historic win and compared it to his upcoming fight by saying:
“That was so beautiful. What he did was, honestly, how I see myself finishing Pantoja. I feel like Pantoja gets himself off balance, commits to his strikes, and I can capitalize off that majorly.
Brandon Royval has a tough test waiting for him inside the T-Mobile Arena on December 16. Alexandre Pantoja has looked phenomenal through his four-fight winning streak, including a life-changing split-decision victory against Brandon Moreno for the flyweight throne in July of this year.
🚨 HUGE FIGHT NEWS 🚨
— UFC (@ufc) September 21, 2023
Brandon Royval discusses when he found out about upcoming title shot
Brandon Royval revealed his upcoming UFC flyweight title fight was announced before he signed the contract.
Earlier this week, Dana White made the official announcement about Alexandre Pantoja’s defending his flyweight title for the first time against Royval. During the same exclusive interview with MiddleEasy’s James Lynch, Royval was asked when he found out about his title shot. ‘Raw Dawg’ responded by saying:
“I didn’t get to tell anybody. I was like sitting on the news for a while. I was kinda waiting for the contract before I was like for surely gonna say anything. But, the announcement came before the contract came.”
Brandon Royval continued:
“Everybody kind of found out at the same time, and I was quickly calling a couple people. I’m like, yo, I need to tell them before they find out on Instagram or something like that. It was just one of those moments where it was like I wanted sit on it until it’s like for surely settled in and all that stuff. I knew about it about like 2 pm or 3 pm on Wednesday.”
December 16 won’t be the first time Brandon Royval has fought Alexandre Pantoja. In August 2021, ‘The Cannibal’ defeated Royval with a second-round submission, extending the latter’s losing streak to two fights.
Since then, ‘Raw Dawg’ has won three consecutive Octagon appearances against Rogerio Bontorin, Matt Schnell, and Matheus Nicolau, with the last two ending in the first round.
Only time will tell which top-tier flyweight can emerge victorious in the action-packed rematch.
Watch Brandon Royval’s entire MiddleEasy interview below: