Deiveson Figueiredo will no longer face Manel Kape at UFC 290.
Doctors determined he is unable to compete at the pay-per-view event, scheduled for July 8 in Las Vegas, due to eye injuries in his most recent bout in January, a doctor stoppage loss to Brandon Moreno.
The former UFC flyweight champion confirmed his withdrawal on this week’s episode of MMA Fighting podcast Trocação Franca. Canal Encarada first reported the news. It’s still unclear if Kape will be given another opponent for UFC 290.
“I’m still injured,” Figueiredo told Trocação Franca. “I asked for a fight, told my manager I wanted to fight already, but when he gave me the fight and I talked to my physical therapist and my ophthalmologist, [they said] my eyesight is still not 100 percent. There are days I see things normal, but there are days it’s not OK, especially the days after I train, so they decided I had to go the full six-month [medical suspension] the ophthalmologist gave me [after UFC 283].”
According to Figueiredo, the plan is to stay active in the gym but avoid any hard training or sparring until late July. “Deus da Guerra” isn’t fully happy with Kape being his first fight back from the championship tetralogy against Moreno, though.
“I admit I didn’t understand it,” Figueiredo said. “The UFC threw me the No. 9 ranked flyweight, and I don’t understand it, given I’m the No. 1. I hope to fight one of the top-5 [flyweights]. I’m in no hurry to recover from my injury. I talked to my manager and asked him to ask the UFC to give me someone in the top 5 and let everybody else fight.”
If given the opportunity to choose his next foe, Figueiredo named Kai Kara-France and Brandon Royal as ideal options.
“Kai Kara-France is someone I want to fight but unfortunately he has a fight booked now,” said Figueiredo, referring to Kara-France’s June 3 clash with Amir Albazi. “And there’s also the guy that knocked out Matheus Nicolau, another great guy to fight me. I hope the UFC gives me one of those guys to fight me. I think I deserve it. I’m not asking for a title shot, I’m asking for someone in the top 5.”