The time has finally come as PFL 1 and the 2023 Regular Season opening card comes to its finale in the Featherweight (145 lb) Division. 2022 Division Champion Brendan Loughnane will continue his run of dominance against the exciting veteran Marlon Moraes. Don't miss the action of this stacked main event! Check out our PFL odds series for our Loughnane-Moraes prediction and pick.

Brendan Loughnane is 26-4 as a professional fighter and has gone 8-1 in the PFL. He was the Featherweight's 2022 Champion and will have a ton of momentum and a target on his back throughout the upcoming season. He's won his last four fights in a row and will hope to make it five straight in the opening Main Event of the season against a well-known staple in the MMA world. Loughnane stands 5'9″ with a 71-inch reach.

Marlon Moraes is 23-11-1 in his career as a mixed martial artist and is 0-1 in his only PFL appearance last year. Moraes spent the majority of his career in the UFC where he reached a record of 5-6. Once an intimidating striker and challenger for the title, Moraes went on a bad four-fight losing skid that saw his departure from the UFC. He had a rough welcome to the PFL in his debut, but will hope to get some of his magic back with his first win. Moraes stands 5'6″ with a 66.5-inch reach.

Here are the PFL Odds, courtesy of FanDuel. 

PFL 1 Odds: Brendan Loughnane-Marlon Moraes Odds

Brendan Loughnane: -650

Marlon Moraes: +400

How to Watch Brendan Loughnane vs. Marlon Moraes


Stream: ESPN App, fuboTV

Time: 9:00 p.m. ET/ 6:00 p.m. PT (Main Card)

Live and breathe sports?

🚨 Get viral graphics, memes, rumors and trending sports news delivered right to your inbox with the Clutch Newsletter.

*Watch sports LIVE with fuboTV (click for a free trial)*

Why Brendan Loughnane Will Win

Brendan Loughnane won the PFL Featherweight Championship last year on pure determination and grit. He's show an ability to be a better fighter each time he steps in the ring and continues to impose dominant game plans on opponents in a variety of ways. His striking is coming along nicely as he continues to improve his accuracy. He has great power in his shots and can easily put opponents down. He's got a good defensive guard and will need to use it against the explosive striking of Moraes. Loughnane will be the younger fighter and will have much more momentum and confidence in this fight.

Loughnane could win this fight by being smart defensively. He's the heavy favorite for a reason, so if he's able to impose himself in the wrestling and hurt Moraes on the feet, he'll cruise to a rather easy victory. The chin of Moraes may be compromised after all these years so Loughnane should look to be aggressive in the striking exchanges. Moraes' arm guard has been known to take some shots, so if Loughnane can get in his face, he'll have a serious chance to hurt the tested 34 year old.

Why Marlon Moraes Will Win

Marlon Moraes had a five-fight run in the UFC that made him look like one of the scariest strikers we've seen at the weight class. Now moving up in weight, Moraes won't have to worry about a serious cut at his age. He's been on a sharp decline and has lost his last five fights by way of KO/TKO. His chin has some real miles on it and has been compromised in the past, so it'll be interesting to see how he holds up against the aggressive Loughnane. Still, Moraes has a ton of power behind his shots and can fire strikes off in rapid succession.

The key for Marlon Moraes in this fight will be to get back to the calculated striking that made him a UFC contender. He hasn't looked like that version of himself for a fairly long time, so it'll be important for Moraes to make up for any offensive shortcomings with his defense. At his age, it's important not to take too many big shots, so he should continue to be conscientious of his chin. If he can let his hands fly and find the distance, he could have a chance to upset on the feet at range.

Final Brendan Loughnane-Marlon Moraes Prediction & Pick

While many MMA fans would like to see Marlon Moraes perform like the fighter he once was, he's been a shell of himself for the last couple of years and hasn't found a solid formula for winning. Until he can show true signs of improvement at this age, it wouldn't be too smart to bet him. This seems like a great spot for Loughnane to continue making a name for himself, let's take him to win the fight.

Final Brendan Loughnane-Marlon Moraes Prediction & Pick: Brendan Loughnane (-650)