Sherdog’s Official Mixed Martial Arts Rankings
Sign up for ESPN+ right here, and you can then stream the UFC live on your smart TV, computer, phone, tablet or streaming device via the ESPN app.
A botched weight cut and an accidental clash of heads cast doubt on Deiveson Figueiredo’s second-round TKO victory against Joseph Benavidez in February, and the former meant that the flyweight belt would remain vacant until their rematch.
In the sequel, Figueiredo made it clear that he is the unquestioned ruler of the 125-pound division, as he dropped Benavidez repeatedly before choking him unconscious in the first round of their headlining clash at UFC Fight Night 172 on Saturday. As a result, the 32-year-old Brazilian is a clear-cut choice for the top spot in our latest flyweight poll. Benavidez, meanwhile, falls to 0-4 in UFC title bouts and assumes a familiar position: second place.
Figueiredo vs. Benavidez wasn’t the only significant flyweight action on Saturday, as Askar Askarov announced himself as a contender with a three-round verdict over Alexandre Pantoja. The Dagestani is unbeaten in 13 professional appearances — the only blemish a controversial split draw against Brandon Moreno — and could be a future foe for Figueiredo. For now, he jumps from 12th to fourth in our rankings, one spot ahead of the man he defeated.
Elsewhere, Jack Hermansson won for the fifth time in his last six outings thanks to a heel hook submission of Kelvin Gastelum 78 seconds into Round 1 of the UFC Fight Night 172 co-main event. “The Joker” leapfrogs Darren Till to No. 6 at 185 pounds, while Gastelum’s three-bout skid sees him fall to eighth.
In other notable action during the week, Calvin Kattar pulled away from Dan Ige to win a five-round verdict in the UFC on ESPN 13 main event last Wednesday. That allows “The Boston Finisher” to join the featherweight Top 10, bumping soon-to-be bantamweight Frankie Edgar to the bubble. Meanwhile, an impressive effort from Taila Santos in a decision win over No. 10 Molly McCann propels the Brazilian to No. 13 at women’s flyweight.
Continue Reading » Heavyweight
« Previous Matches to Make After UFC Fight Night 172 Next Fight Facts: UFC Fight Night 172 ‘Figueiredo vs. Benavidez 2’ »