Brazilian perennial contender, Deiveson ‘Daico’ Figueiredo has tipped the scales for his flyweight title bout with two-time challenger, Joseph ‘Joey Two Time’ Benavidez – making him ineligible to claim champion status should he beat Benavidez in their UFC Fight Night Norfolk main event.
The #2 ranked contender initially hit the scales at the weigh-ins, weighing 127.5-pounds, and after what is believed to have been a taxing cut, refused to continue cutting weight. Figueiredo (17-1) failed to make the limit, subsequently making his ineligible to win the championship on Saturday night. Number-one contender, Benavidez (28-5) successfully made weight at his first attempt on Friday afternoon, making 124.5-pounds comfortably.
If the bout goes ahead – we will have a similar scenario as the main event of UFC 221 back in February of 2018 play-out. Yoel Romero was ineligible to claim interim middleweight champion status off the back of his devastating knockout of former gold-holder, Luke Rockhold, after he tipped the scales at 187.1-pounds. In his rematch with Robert Whittaker, the Cuban was once more unable to pick up the 185-pound crown with a victory, after he weighed in at 185.2-pounds, and was refused extra time to cut weight by the Illinois commission.
If Figueiredo manages to overcome Benavidez tomorrow night – the status of not just the championship, but the division as a whole may come into serious question. There’s been constant chatter over the previous calendar year surrounding the future of the division – since Demetrious Johnson’s move to ONE Championship, and Henry Cejudo’s decision to turn his attention to bantamweight waters.