It looks like Joseph Benavidez will have at least one more chance at UFC gold.
This past Saturday night (Feb. 29), Deiveson Figueiredo and Benavidez did battle in the main event of UFC Norfolk. Benavidez had a solid opening round and was able to land some clean shots on his opponent. Things went downhill for Benavidez when it appeared he got too aggressive and ran into an inadvertent headbutt in the second round. Figueiredo would go on to score a TKO victory.
White Says Figueiredo vs. Benavidez 2 Is Likely
Figueiredo would be recognized as the UFC flyweight champion if he made weight. He did not, so the men’s 125-pound gold remains vacant. Speaking to reporters, UFC president Dana White said he plans to book the rematch (h/t MMAJunkie.com).
“That was a great fight, absolutely I think the head butt had a lot to do with the knockout, too,” White told reporters Tuesday in Las Vegas. “Not taking anything away from him (Figueiredo), it was a great fight, but I think they have to do that fight again. First of all, he didn’t make weight, (and) Joe still fought him. There was a head butt, so a lot of controversy in that fight, but it was a great fight.
“Both guys came to fight. I’m sure you guys know how I feel about him not making weight, but we’ll do it again. They both deserve it.”
To some, the rematch may not make much sense. After all, Figueiredo simply did his job, at least when inside the Octagon, by taking advantage of Benavidez’s mistake. On the flip side, some can take Benavidez’s success in the first round and say that he will learn from his error and be more reserved in the rematch. If anything, Benavidez showed up for a title fight while Figueiredo was unable to have a successful weight cut.
What do you make of Dana White’s plan to book Deiveson Figueiredo vs. Joseph Benavidez II?