Edson Barboza spent eight weeks preparing the knee that knocked out Billy Quarantillo.
At UFC Kansas City, Barboza ended his two-fight losing streak with a first-round knockout against Quarantillo. Not only did he secure a win, but ‘Junior’ also left with a $50,000 performance bonus for his picture-perfect knee that landed when his opponent attempted to change levels.
During a post-fight interview backstage, Barboza had this to say about the highlight-reel finish:
“I expected he’s coming hard with some good bangs but goes straight into taking me down but I’m ready for that. Most guys that fight me try to take me down and, yeah, I trained this move for eight weeks. I know he’d throw the jab, change his level a little bit, I know his head is gonna be exactly in that spot and it worked very well.”
Barboza made his UFC debut in November 2010, winning his first four fights with the promotion. Although the Rio de Janeiro native hasn’t won UFC gold, he’s compiled a list of well-known opponents, including Khabib Nurmagomedov, Justin Gaethje, Tony Ferguson, Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone, and more. At 37 years old, ‘Junior’ believes he has what it takes to make a run at the featherweight title.
Edson Barboza crushes Billy Quarantillo.#ViolentMoney #VMTV #MMA pic.twitter.com/Ti4B0khCkx
— Violent Money TV (@ViolentMoneyTV) April 16, 2023
Watch Edson Barboza’s post-fight interview backstage below:
Edson Barboza wants his next opponent to be someone ranked ahead of him
Edson Barboza’s path to a featherweight title shot won’t be easy since he recently lost two consecutive fights. With that said, highlight-reel knockouts combined with his name value could help speed up the process. During the same post-fight interview backstage, Barboza had this to say about what he wants next:
“Anybody in front of me in the rankings. Everybody knows, I never say no for a fight. I fight anybody, anywhere. I fought the best guys in the world in the UFC. Give me somebody in front of me in the rankings. I’m ready.”
Barboza is the number fourteen-ranked featherweight, but the rankings haven’t been updated since UFC Kansas City. Since most of the 145-pound ranked fighters are either booked or already fought ‘Junior,’ there are limited options for his next opponent. Depending on how the Brazilian is ranked next week, Sodiq Yusuff could be the next, especially considering they were supposed to fight in October 2020.