Joseph Benavidez is not a fan of anyone becoming champ-champs.
Ever since Conor McGregor became the first fighter in UFC history to hold two titles simultaneously at UFC 205 many champions have wanted to do just that. Daniel Cormier did it at heavyweight, Amanda Nunes did it, T.J. Dillashaw tried to do it and Henry Cejudo did it in June of last year. But, the problem with that as no fighter has successfully defended both titles while their champ-champs.
For Benavidez, he knew Cejudo had no interest in going back to flyweight after he won the bantamweight title at UFC 238.
“He wasn’t mentioning me in any interviews, he wasn’t mentioning the flyweight division, I kind of knew where it was heading,” Benavidez said on MMA Tonight on Sirius XM (via BJPENN.com). “I was like Look, I don’t want it to be for an interim. I want it to be for the vacant title. And the company did the right thing, it’s amazing. It’s like you never know what to expect.”
So, after having the flyweight division held up for a year with no title defense insight, the promotion created a vacant title between Benavidez and Deiveson Figueiredo. But, Benavidez says that just proves champ-champs doesn’t work and hopes the UFC makes a change on it.
“I think the bigger picture with that is the double-champ thing in general, it always comes to this stalemate, no matter who you are,” he said. “When you’re going to put two divisions and multiple fighters on hold, for one person to kind of have that glory and accomplishment for a night, I think that’s something that maybe needs to change. They haven’t been able to execute that right moving forward after someone wins both titles.”
For now, Joseph Benavidez is focused on winning the title and if he does that he wants to be active defending it not chasing other belts.
Cole Shelton covers MMA for BJPenn.com, MMANews, and MyMMANews.com while also being the lead MMA odds writer for Sports Betting Dime