UFC News: Joseph Benavidez signed to new UFC Flyweight deal; Flyweight division here to stay?

UFC 225: Whittaker v Romero 2
UFC 225: Whittaker v Romero 2

What's the story?

UFC Flyweight star, Joseph Benavidez has just been given a new four-fight deal with the Ultimate Fighting Championship according to reports by MMA Junkie. The bigger news here, however, is that the deal is for a Flyweight Division contract.

What's more, if reports prove correct, this could mean that the idea of the UFC eliminating the Flyweight division altogether was exaggerated and it could not be happening after all. Is the UFC Flyweight Division here to stay?

In case you didn't know...

In 2018, barely a week after 'Mighty Mouse' Demetrious Johnson was traded for ONE Championship fighter, Ben Askren, rumors emerged that the company was slowly planning to eliminate the Flyweight division altogether.

With it being known that Dana White was never a fan of the division in the first place, it did not come as a surprise to MMA fans and was not hard to believe. Added to that, Flyweight fighters talked about how they were being released by the company, and that others were being given the opportunity to move up to Bantamweight.

Every report that emerged seemed to point to the inevitable end of the division. However, the Benavidez deal could indicate that things are not what they seemed.

The heart of the matter

The deal UFC handed Joseph Benavidez is not one for just a few fights, but is a four-fight deal.

When Benavidez was asked by reporters if the deal had included a clause that he may have to move up a division in the future, he said that the UFC officials "Didn't bring it up." Benavidez has revealed that things had really 'chilled out' in the UFC Flyweight Division, and it was 'business as usual' for the most part.

This deal is the first indication that UFC actually has plans for the Flyweight division in the long run, and that they are not planning on shutting it down anytime soon.

What's next?

TJ Dillashaw is set to square off at Flyweight on the 19th of January at UFC Fight Night 143: Dillashaw vs. Cejudo, where he will attempt to win the Flyweight Title.

Benavidez himself has a fight on the same card, as he is set to face Ortiz.

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Edited by Kishan Prasad
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