UFC 227 is now available on Amazon Prime.
Ahead of tonight’s rematch between former teammates T.J. Dillashaw and Cody Garbrandt, fellow Team Alpha Male staple Joseph Benavidez is maintaining a neutral stance.
Talking with Sherdog.com yesterday following the UFC 227 ceremonial weigh ins, the flyweight remained diplomatic regarding the rerun of the grudge match.
“To me it already is in the rearview...I’m looking at it as subjectively as I always do. I forgot that and removed myself from that portion long ago,” said Benavidez, who is town to soak up the festivities while promoting his Dapper Scrappers brand. “Now I’m just looking at two really awesome fighters that I’ve trained with that I both want to see out there competing. I hope they do their best.”
As far as any predictions go, the two-time challenger remains mum on whom he expects to get their hand raised in the main event:
“The last fight was so quick. I think they’ll tag each other, hurt each other...but we just might get see a little more grappling. They’re both really good wrestlers.”
Beyond his ties to the main event participants, the co-headliner is particularly relevant to the perennial top ranked 125 pounder. Benavidez has seen divisional king Demetrious Johnson twice, dropping a competitive decision the first time at UFC 152 and suffering an early KO in their second outing at UFC on Fox 19. He also scored decision win over Henry Cejudo at the “TUF 24 Finale.”
With his eye on returning to action in October, Benavidez looks to land another top-ranked opponent and should Cejudo emerge victorious, hopes to rematch the Olympic gold medalist in his first title defense. “I’m sure he wants to redeem himself too,” he said regarding that potential match up.
Despite being 0-2 with the reigning champion, he doesn’t feel like “the odd man out of the division” and has ruled out a return to his original home in bantamweight division.
Benavidez was last seen in the Octagon at UFC 225 dropping a razor-thin split decision to Sergio Pettis following an ACL tear that kept him on the shelf for 18 months. The loss snapped a seven-fight win streak.
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