Two surging Brazilian flyweights are set for a collision course on home soil at UFCFight Night 67. Both Wilson Reis and Jussier Formiga are riding winning streaks heading into what looms as a meaningful affair within the 125-pound landscape. Reis has been quick to vault into the top-15 rankings since moving down from bantamweight, while Formiga is finally living up to the high expectations that accompanied his original signing by the promotion.
Reis has recorded back-to-back victories since his decision to test the flyweight waters after a loss in a 135-pound clash against Iuri Alcantara. The 30-year-old Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt is coming off a terrific performance at UFC 179 when he submitted Scott Jorgensen in the first round. A devastating body kick from Reis set up the fight-ending sequence. He’s earned nine submission triumphs in 19 career victories, and is currently holding down a No. 14-ranking.
Formiga had been actively campaigning for a Mexico City showdown against unbeaten former Olympic gold medalist Henry Cejudo at UFC 188 in June, but still gets a solid test against Reis. He entered the UFC with the reputation of being one of the best flyweight fighters in the world, but had some early struggles that he’s been able to overcome.
The 29-year-old now finds himself sitting at No. 5 in the latest rankings based on solid performances against Jorgensen and, most recently, Zach Makovsky. Formiga showcased his stellar grappling skills in that victory against “Fun Size” at Fight Night 47. Another successful effort for Formiga on May 30 would definitely vault him into the title conversation. He’s compiled a 3-2 UFC record with those losses coming via knockout against former title challengers, Joseph Benavidez and John Dodson.
This shapes up as an excellent matchup between two fighters with superior ground games. Reis and Formiga have combined for 17 submission victories, and this clash should make for a high-level chess match. Both men will be looking to make an emphatic statement in what looms as a pivotal affair in front of their Brazilian brethren.
Rick LaFitte is an MMA Writer for Rant Sports