Joseph Benavidez will get his shot at becoming a UFC champion, but it won’t be against Henry Cejudo.
According to a report from MMA Junkie, the UFC is looking to strip Cejudo of the 125-pound championship. In turn, the Las Vegas-based mixed martial arts (MMA) promotion is also eying a fight between Benavidez and Deiveson Figueiredo for the vacant strap. The bout would take place at UFC on ESPN+ 27 from the Chartway Arena in Norfolk, Virginia on February 29.
Benavidez is currently on a three-fight win streak coming off a TKO win over Jussier Formiga at UFC on ESPN 3 in June. He’ll take on Figueiredo, who holds a professional record of 17-1 in MMA, coming off a first-round submission win over Tim Elliott at UFC on ESPN+ 19 in October. Cejudo hasn’t fought since June when he beat Marlon Moraes to claim the vacant bantamweight title.
Cejudo has sounded less than excited about the possibility of cutting down to 125 pounds again, and has thrust all his energy into landing a potential title defense against Jose Aldo at 135 pounds come 2020. “Triple C” hasn’t fought since his win over Moraes earlier this year, nursing injuries. Speaking to MMA Junkie, Cejudo’s manager, Ali Abdelaziz, says nothing has been finalized just yet, but the camp doesn’t seem too concerned about being stripped.
“We haven’t been told anything official yet, but the UFC got to do what they got to do,” Abdelaziz said. “We move on.”
What do you make of the UFC’s decision to strip Cejudo of the 125-pound title?