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New UFC flyweight champion crowned at Fight Island


Image: Zuffa/Getty Images

The second time was a charm for Deiveson Figueiredo as he dominated Joseph Benavidez Saturday to win the vacant UFC flyweight title in the main event of the third Fight Island show.

Figueiredo physically dominated Benavidez early in the first round, ensnaring him three times in rear naked choke attempts and knocking him down another three times off punches. The third - off a right hand - dropped Benavidez at which time Figueiredo attacked, landing hard right elbows that bloodied him badly.

A fourth rear naked choke attempt was enough as Benavidez passed out at 4:48 of the first round, giving Figueiredo the technical submission victory.

This is the first UFC belt for the 32-year-old Brazilian which had been vacant since December 2019 when double champion Henry Cejudo relinquished it so he could focus on the bantamweight title instead. He has now won four straight and is 8-1 in the Octagon with six finishes.

Benavidez and Figueiredo were originally matched up in February, but Figueiredo (19-1) missed weight and was ineligible to win the title. He still defeated Benavidez by second round TKO that night and without any other real challengers, the UFC rematched the two instead. There was some question as to whether he would be able to compete Saturday 

The 35-year-old Benavidez (28-7) is now 0-5 in UFC/WEC title fights.