The 2023 PFL regular season kicks off this weekend from the company’s residency in Las Vegas, The Theater at Virgin Hotels, with a load of great scraps in the featherweight and light heavyweight divisions. Headlining this first event will be MMA veterans Brendan Loughnane and Marlon Moraes.
Read along for a deep dive into this main event and an official Loughnane vs Moraes prediction.
Brendan Loughnane vs. Marlon Moraes Information
Brendan Loughnane vs Marlon Moraes
Location of the fight: The Theater at Virgin Hotels, Las Vegas, NV.
Date and Time: April 1, 2023, 2:00 PM ET.
How to Watch: ESPN+
Brendan Loughnane vs. Marlon Moraes Last Fight Record
Loughnane has not lost a fight since the 2021 PFL playoffs. He is coming off a championship in 2022 with a big paycheck and a TKO win in the championship round last November.
The once-great Marlon Moraes is, unfortunately, on a five-fight losing streak. He lost his PFL debut last November via TKO to Sheymon Moraes.
Brendan Loughnane vs. Marlon Moraes Betting Analysis
Brendan Loughnane Facts to Know
The 25-4 Loughnane is one of the most dominant fighters to come through PFL MMA. Fighting out of Manchester, England, he has dominated in the PFL the last couple of seasons. Last year, Loughnane had a max punch speed of 26.79 MPH, one of the fastest in all divisions.
He went 4-0 in 2022, on his way to a PFL world title. During that run, Loughnane landed 24 out of 39 takedown attempts, 549 out of 1023 arm strikes, 363 out of 507 leg strikes, and stayed on the outside of the cage for about 65% of the time.
He will use his length and striking to stay on the outside, as well as mix in his wrestling.
Marlon Moraes Facts to Know
The only word to describe the last few years of Moraes’ career is “unfortunate.” The living legend of the bantamweight division, in both the World Series of Fighting and the UFC, is now looking retirement in the face before this main event fight.
We aren’t going to break down recent experience on the MMA fights schedule because he is seemingly only a shell of his former self in competition.
But don’t forget that this is the same guy that took out Aldo in 2019 and Aljo Sterling in 2017 and had wars with the likes of Henry Cejudo and other bantamweight legends.
No injuries have been reported to the NSAC.
Brendan Loughnane vs. Marlon Moraes Betting Preview
MMA odds get increasingly tougher to bet on when you are looking at the smaller promotions outside of the UFC. Especially with PFL’s league style of fighting, you aren’t going to have everybody fight someone on their level all year.
Loughnane is the massive -700 favorite in this one. If someone told you in 2017 that Moraes was ever going to be in a fight with a -700 favorite while being the underdog, you probably would have scoffed at them.
Plain and simple, Moraes needs a win here. He might even need one if he wants to have his next MMA fight this year. He and his family have to be in a position where his health is taken into account for the future of his career. Getting finished in the cage six-straight times is impossible to come back from.
The Loughnane vs Moraes prediction will be very similar across all platforms and from fighting experts. There really isn’t much to discuss.
Brendan Loughnane vs. Marlon Moraes Betting Prediction
MMA predictions are tough to make when the fight is very close, but when you have a massive favorite as this bout does, it seems easy.
Moraes is going to be a step too slow, a little too small, and with too little left on his chin to survive a fight with a killer like Loughnane. Loughnane is coming into this fight with loads of momentum, confidence, and the motivation to have a win over an MMA legend on his resume.
The final Loughnane vs Moraes prediction is Loughnane getting his hand raised. Since there isn’t any value in the Loughnane moneyline, take a look at a Loughnane prop having him winning inside the distance.
- If you are a massive Moraes fan, maybe put down some money on the over 1.5 rounds to cheer for him to survive until deeper into the fight.