For a second time, Joseph Benavidez will fight Demetrious Johnson for the UFC flyweight belt. The bout will take place on Nov. 30 during the Ultimate Fighter 18 finale. It will be a rematch of the first-ever flyweight title fight.
To say the entire world saw this coming would be an understatement. Benavidez and Johnson have shown the world that they are the two best flyweights walking this earth. The only person Benavidez has lost while he has been in the UFC is Johnson, while Johnson has only lost to Dominick Cruz at bantamweight.
The first fight the two put on happened back in September 2012. It was a highly-contested battle that went back and forth throughout. At the end of the fight, though the judges decided Johnson was the winner, there were still questions as to who won the fight.
Since their first battle, Johnson has defended his title twice. The first was against John Dodson. Going into the bout, many people believed Dodson was the only person in the division who could match Mighty Mouse’s speed. That proved to be wrong. Johnson still beat Dodson to the punch and was able to use the clinch to muscle the bigger fighter around. Ultimately, Johnson won the fight by decision.
In his next bout, Johnson completely outclassed John Moraga and finished him in the fifth round by submission.
Benavidez will be riding a three-fight win streak going into the fight. In his first bout following the title shot, the Team Alpha Male product decisively beat Ian McCall via unanimous decision. Benavidez then went on to showcase his new, crisp striking abilities (courtesy of Duane Ludwig) to knock out Darren Uyenoyama in the second round and Jussier da Silva in the first round.
Though it will only be a year and two months since the two last fought for the title, neither fighter will walk into the octagon the same as they did before. Benavidez’s striking continues to improve in each fight, which is scary for Johnson. Johnson still hold the speed advantage, but it will be interesting to see how he will handle the new, improved, hungry Benavidez when the two meet in November.
Anthony Cloud is a MMA Writer for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter: @TheAceCloud.