Joseph Benavidez (28-6, 15-4 in UFC) and Deiveson Figueiredo (18-1, 7-1 in UFC) are at it again, this time headlining a stocked UFC card Saturday on Fight Island in Abu Dhabi.
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The prelims (5 p.m. ET) will be on ESPN and the main card (8 p.m. ET) won’t be on regular TV, but anyone in the US can watch all the fights–both prelims and main card–via ESPN+.
Once signed up, you can then watch Figueiredo vs Benavidez 2 and all the fights on your computer via ESPN.com, or you can watch on your phone (Android and iPhone compatible), tablet, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, or other compatible streaming device via the ESPN app.
Figueiredo vs Benavidez 2 Preview
This will be the second time Figueiredo and Benavidez have squared off this year. Prior to their match in February, Figueiredo missed weight, nullifying his title chances. Still, he emerged victorious in the second round. The two fighters smacked their heads together accidentally, after blows, and a bloodied Benavidez was clearly reeling after that. A hard right to his face afterwards sent him to the mat, and made Figueiredo the winner — and he recently shared his thoughts on the head smack that may have helped determine the outcome.
“The clash of heads was an accident; it wasn’t my fault,” Figueiredo said about the incident. “Benavidez was trying to strike me and I was defending myself. It had nothing to do with the final sequence and subsequent knockout.”
For Figueiredo, his biggest disappointment was letting himself down by missing weight. “I was very disappointed,” Figueiredo said about his win in February. “My biggest goal is to win the UFC belt, so if I had been able to bring it home, it would have been a dream come true.”
He made weight this time, so his title chances are back on the table, and he is predicting a repeat of what happened in February.
“I will knock Benavidez out again and make it clear that it had nothing to do with the weight,” Figueiredo said this week. “I know his game and all his strategies; he won’t stand a chance. Benavidez has a lot of stamina, so he is able to keep his pace, but this time, I am more familiar with his game, so he won’t even have a chance to strike me,” he added. “He should be worried.”
For his part, Benavidez was also disappointed with how things went for him the first time these two tangled.
“I was in shock after because it’s tough when you start believing in all this great stuff happening and doing everything right, and then it doesn’t go right,” he said this week. “It was really hard, but it was one of those things where everything was going right. I won the first round. You don’t abandon those things. You don’t abandon the positivity and stuff, but there’s just another reassurance that you still have to do everything, and you only have a chance in this sport, no matter how good you feel.”
Benavidez is absolutely correct in his assessment that he won the first round, and it was clear he lost a few steps when he whacked his head against Figueiredo’s. He’ll now get one more chance to show what he can do against him — and based on comments he made earlier in the week, there is no love lost between these two fighters.
“I don’t like him,” Benavidez said about his opponent this week. “And that is rare for me. It’s not personal, because I don’t really know him personally and everything. But I definitely don’t like him. It definitely makes you want to go out there and hurt someone worse. … I just want to put this guy away. I just want to shut him up.”
He’ll get his chance to do just that Saturday evening.
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