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The Strengths and Weaknesses of Deiveson Figueiredo

| December 4, 2020 3:28 am PDT
Deiveson Figueiredo Strengths and Weaknesses

I just love watching Deiveson Figueiredo fight. 

Until his breakout year in the UFC’s flyweight division in 2020, Figueiredo was a bit-part player in a weight class that looked destined for the can. But that all changed when he scooped the title vacated by Henry Cejudo following two monumental wins over Joseph Benavidez.

Many tout Figueiredo as the new breed of flyweight. If that is so, what exactly is it that makes him so effective in the modern game? Sure, the Brazilian appears to be the ultimate example of a fan-friendly, technically proficient finisher. But are there any discernible weaknesses in his armor to exploit? 

By laying down Figueiredo’s strengths and weaknesses, I will attempt to answer those questions in detail.

Ready? Let’s do it.

Figueiredo’s Biggest Strengths

When you consider the history of the UFC flyweight division, Figueiredo has to be one of a kind.

Armored with more weapons than a small nation, the Brazilian continues to belie his diminutive size to deliver some of the most crushing punishment under the promotion’s banner.

Here’s what makes the “God of War” such a phenomenal fighter.

Stoppage Power

You could best describe Figueiredo as a fighter who throws with bad intentions.

His bone-crunching power almost appears out of step with the division. Sometimes, you wonder he can generate so much pop in shots, given that he stands at just 5’5″. 

His attitude to striking is more on par with Muay Thai than mixed martial arts. Rather than circling when on the defensive, Figueiredo slams punishing wide counter punches and snapping leg kicks in exchange for what he eats.

Sure, his setups are pretty basic, but the combination of speed and power makes him a fighter you don’t want to trade with. He has a solid chin, too, and backs himself to plant his feet and go for goal.

Power and Physical Strength

An extremely strong competitor, Figueiredo, is also a serious wrestler.

But not in the traditional sense. In fact, there is something of a strength and a weakness to his approach to wrestling. I’ll cover the weakness a bit later, but for now, let’s stay positive.

Basically, Figueiredo lives off his strength and power. He is a difficult man to take down because of his strength and low center of gravity. His anticipation is excellent, and this allows him to reset into a favorable position when faced with a strong wrestler. 

His athleticism contributes a lot to his ability to both land takedowns and defend them, too.

Submission Game

A black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Figueiredo is a nasty man to hang with on the floor.

More than anything, his submission game is very straightforward. You could call it predictable. But just like Khabib Nurmagomedov’s gameplan is easily predicted before he steps into the cage, stopping it is another thing altogether.

Figueiredo loves the guillotine choke. It’s pretty much his favorite finish. But there is no doubt that this is a fighter with a comprehensive knowledge of the art beyond submissions, as we have seen when he has been forced into defending subs.

Figueiredo’s Weaknesses in MMA

Look, every fighter has a weakness. Even the greats. And that’s what makes betting on UFC fights so interesting. 

But we all know that the onus is on a competitor to expose their opponent’s shortcomings or defensive fragilities. And Figueiredo, like almost every other fighter in the UFC, has had his flaws highlighted at least once.

With that said, he does have more strengths in his locker than weaknesses. But these three are the most obvious of his flaws.

Wrestling Defense

I guess it’s difficult to point out Figueiredo’s weakness in defensive wrestling when he hasn’t exactly been dominated in this department.

But technically, he leaves a lot to be desired. As I said earlier, he relies on his strength and athleticism when defending takedowns, as he does tend to be very sloppy with leaving his hips open. If an opponent can clear his first three lines and catch him off balance, Figueiredo would suffer. 

Henry Cejudo, anyone?

Flat Footwork

Figueiredo is the most terrifying striker in his division.

As mentioned above, his power is just phenomenal. But most of the fighters he has faced to date have essentially fed into his game plan. In other words, they haven’t used lateral movement to circle away from that monster of a right hand.

Would Demetrious Johnson or Henry Cejudo go the same way as his losing opponents have? I’m not sure they would.

Cutting Weight

This is a weakness that remains to be seen.

You can’t exactly say that Figueiredo has been a “serial weight misser,” but not hitting the scales on point before that first Benavidez fight was painful to watch.

Figueiredo’s first loss came against Jussier Formiga in March 2019. But many felt that his split decision win over Jarred Brooks in 2017 should have also been a loss. What do you think? 

These were two fights that Figueiredo was reported to have experienced bad weight cuts before. If that’s the case, could this be a future problem for Figueiredo?

The Best Flyweight in the World?

Now you know the main strengths and weaknesses of Deiveson Figueiredo, I bet you can’t wait to analyze them in real-time.

There have been fewer fighters in recent years to have taken the promotion by storm in the manner Figueiredo has. And I guess your interest in the Brazilian wrecking ball has brought you here. 

If you are considering betting on Figueiredo fights, I hope you enjoyed the read. When betting on a fight, it’s always a good idea to know as much about a fighter as there is to know. That also applies to their opponents. 

Figueiredo is an incredible fighter who brings a unique spark and flair to his bouts. I can’t wait to watch him do his thing again—much the same as I’m looking forward to seeing more of the guys below.

Adam Haynes
Adam Haynes

Adam is a sports writer and tipster with a strong background in MMA, boxing, and combat sports.

When Adam isn't writing about those, as well as politics, rugby, and Gaelic Games, he can be found working on methods and strategies to beat the bookies.

For his troubles, Adam is a fan of Leinster Rugby, Glasgow Celtic, and trusting the process.

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