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Benavidez steps in as backup for Cejudo vs. Dillashaw, Figueiredo fight scratched

Joseph Benavidez will be the official replacement for the superfight between Henry Cejudo and TJ Dillashaw.

MMA: TUF Finale - Benavidez vs Perez
Joseph Benavidez
Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

No more Deiveson Figueiredo for Joseph Benavidez.

Originally scheduled to take on ‘Deus da Guerra’ at UFC 233, the two-time flyweight title challenger was going to have his bout with the Brazilian prospect moved to the UFC Brooklyn card, but an official press release from the UFC revealed that ‘Joe B’ was selected as the official replacement for that event’s main bout, the superfight between flyweight champion, Henry Cejudo and bantamweight champ, TJ Dillashaw.

In an interview with MMAjunkie, Benavidez stated that he would prefer to fight, but will stay ready for whatever might happen.

“I’m just going to be there. The options happen. You don’t always get your preference. I would rather fight than just weigh in, but that’s a whole other thing. I don’t wish ill will on anyone in the title fight, either, because I know how hard they worked to get there. If someone falls out then I get that opportunity, as well. There’s a ton of options on the table, and I’m ready for all of them. I’ll be in Brooklyn ready to fight for the title.”

Joseph Benavidez (26-5) knocked out Alex Perez in the first round of the fight, on November 30. The win made the 34-year-old recover from split decision loss to Sergio Pettis back in June. Prior to that loss, however, Benavidez was on a six-fight winning streak, having defeated notable names such as Henry Cejudo, John Moraga and Dustin Ortiz.

UFC on ESPN+ 1 will take place in Brooklyn, New York, on January 19. So far, the UFC has not announced what’s next for Figueiredo.