At UFC Fight Night 28 Wednesday evening, flyweight Joseph Benavidez kept the Team Alpha Male streak rolling fast and heavy, knocking out Jussier Formiga in the first round.
Benavidez (19-3) found Formiga's chin early and often, landing a precision punch combination and then dropping Formiga for good with a heavy knee strike. A few punches on a turtled-up Formiga (15-3) ended the engagement.
What we'll remember about this fight
Its one-sidedness. Benavidez was indeed a heavy favorite coming into the fight, but it was entirely feasible that Formiga's world-class jiu-jitsu could prove to be the equalizer. But Formiga didn't even make a serious effort to get the fight to the ground, and that big knee was the result.
What we learned about Jussier Formiga
He needs to learn how to execute a single- and/or double-leg takedown. His stand-up appeared purely defensive in nature and was like a wet paper towel taking on a ball-peen. Formiga either needs to broaden his game, and fast, or take a seat and wait for the strawweight cavalry to arrive.
What we learned about Joseph Benavidez
He declined to overtly demand a title shot after the fight, but he has beaten three good fighters since losing to champ Demetrious Johnson not even a year ago: Ian McCall, Darren Uyenoyama and now Formiga. I think I learned that a rematch is in order. I don't see anyone who has done more to deserve it.
What's next for Formiga
Louis Gaudinot, who lost to Tim Elliott last Saturday at UFC 164.
What's next for Benavidez
Demetrious Johnson. Team Alpha Male's different now, with the addition of Duane Ludwig as its coach. Benavidez, Urijah Faber, Chad Mendes. They are all kicking butt and are all right on the cusp of a title shot. If I were Johnson, I'd feel like I was avoiding Benavidez if I was matched up with anyone else.
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