Joseph Benavidez will serve as the backup to the flyweight title fight between Henry Cejudo and T.J. Dillashaw in January but now he actually has a fight to keep him busy as well.
On Saturday, UFC officials confirmed via Newsday that Benavidez would rematch Dustin Ortiz on Jan. 19 in Brooklyn, N.Y. as part of the UFC’s debut card on ESPN and ESPN+.
Benavidez was originally scheduled to fight Brazilian Deiveson Figueiredo at UFC 233 on Jan. 26 but that card was cancelled due to not having a main event.
Benavidez was then put on standby to serve as the backup to the flyweight title fight one week earlier but unfortunately Figueiredo was unable to compete on that date.
Now the UFC has given Benavidez a fight against Ortiz, who he actually defeated when they first met back in 2014 by unanimous decision.
Ortiz is currently riding a three-fight win streak including two of those wins by knockout as he looks to avenge his prior loss to Benavidez when they clash again in January.
Benavidez vs. Ortiz is the latest addition to the UFC’s debut card on ESPN and ESPN+ that will be headlined by the champion versus champion fight as Cejudo puts his 125-pound title up for grabs against bantamweight king T.J. Dillashaw.
If anything were to happen to either Cejudo or Dillashaw, then Benavidez would step into the main event as the replacement.