Alexandre Pantoja vs. Steve Erceg flyweight title bout announced for UFC 301

Alexandre Pantoja will defend his flyweight title at UFC 301 in a five-round contest against rising prospect Steve Erceg, the UFC announced Friday.

MMA Fighting has learned that both fighters have agreed to the matchup, but have yet to sign bout agreements.

Pantoja (27-5) won and defended the 125-pound championship in 2023 with wins over Brandon Moreno and Brandon Royval, boosting his current winning streak to five.

Erceg (12-1) has won three straight bouts since joining the UFC in 2023, capped off by a vicious knockout of Matt Schnell this past March.

“He’s a tough opponent,” Pantoja said on UFC Fight Pass show Bancada. “He’s tougher than Royval and Moreno for me, because he comes from down the rankings and he has nothing to lose. He’s ranked No. 10 and is fresh in the division. The thing in my favor is that I’m more experienced in fighting, and that will be used by me in the octagon. I can’t make mistakes or underestimate him because he hits hard.”

The company also announced two new matchups for UFC 301. In the middleweight division, Michel Pereira gets a quick turnaround to battle Mahmud Muradov, and former title contender Karolina Kowalkiewicz takes on Iasmin Lucindo in a strawweight bout.

UFC 301 takes place May 4 at the Jeunesse Arena in Pantoja’s native home of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Check the updated lineup below.

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