Las Vegas – UFC® returns to Norfolk with the vacant flyweight title up for grabs, as No. 1 ranked contender Joseph Benavidez and No. 3 ranked Deiveson Figueiredo battle to secure their first UFC championship. Also on the card, top women’s featherweight prospects meet to stake their claim for a title shot as Felicia Spencer takes on Zarah Fairn.
UFC FIGHT NIGHT ON ESPN+®: BENAVIDEZ vs. FIGUEIREDO will take place Saturday, Feb. 29 at Chartway Arena with all fights carried exclusively on ESPN+ in English and Spanish. The main card begins at 8 p.m. ET with the prelims kicking off at 5 p.m. ET. Doors open at 4 p.m. ET.
A member of the flyweight roster since its inception in 2012, Benavidez (28-5, fighting out of Las Cruces, N.M.) hopes that his third UFC title challenge will be the charm to obtaining his first gold strap. A perennial top contender for most of his career, Benavidez has proven himself to be one of the best in the world with wins over Jussier Formiga, Henry Cejudo and Tim Elliot. He now looks to become the only person to stop Figueiredo and finally earn his long-awaited championship.
One of the most dangerous finishers in the flyweight division, Figueiredo (17-1, fighting out of Condor Belem, Para, Brazil) looks to leave no doubt in his first-ever title opportunity. Since joining the UFC roster in 2017, he has earned impressive stoppage wins against Tim Elliot, John Moraga and Joseph Morales. Now, he intends on delivering his most impressive performance yet in the biggest fight of his career.
Intending to start the new year with a statement, Spencer (7-1, fighting out of Orlando, Fla. by way of Montreal, Canada) looks to bounce back into the win column and declare herself the top contender for the featherweight belt. A former Invicta FC champion, Spencer impressed in her UFC debut with a first-round submission over Megan Anderson. Now, she aims to add another dominant stoppage to her record when she faces Fairn in the co-main event.
A striking specialist, Fairn (6-3, fighting out of Paris, France) looks to improve on her UFC debut and show that she can compete with the best in the world. With four knockouts and four first-round finishes in her MMA career, Fairn has proven that she is a dangerous test for anyone. Now, she intends on securing her first UFC win and announcing herself as the next contender to watch in the division.
Additional bouts on the card include:
- Dana White’s Contender Series signee Aalon Cruz (8-2, fighting out of Tampa, Fla.) aims to impress in his UFC debut against the always-exciting Steven Peterson (18-9, fighting out of Dallas, Texas)
- Bantamweight prospects Gabriel Silva (7-1, fighting out of Rio De Janeiro, Brazil) and Kyler Phillips (6-1, fighting out of Glendale, Calif.) battle to secure their first official UFC win
- Jordan Griffin (17-7, fighting out of Milwaukee, Wisc.) looks to bounce back into the win column against debuting Dana White’s Contender Series signee TJ Brown (14-6, fighting out of Little Rock, Ark.)
- Top middleweight prospects clash as Brendan Allen (12-3, fighting out of Milwaukee, Wisc.) meets Tom Breese (11-1, fighting out of Birmingham, England)
- In a battle of featherweight strikers, Mike Davis (8-2, fighting out of Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) intends to take out Giga Chikadze (6-1, fighting out of Huntington Beach, Calif.)
- In further women’s featherweight action, Megan Anderson (10-4, fighting out of Kansas City, Mo.) looks to spoil the debut of Norma Dumont (4-0, fighting out of State of Minas Gerais, Brazil)
- Undefeated Sean Brady (11-0, fighting out of Philadelphia, Pa.) intends to secure another impressive win when he takes on fellow top welterweight prospect Ismail Naurdiev (19-3, fighting out of Salzburg, Austria)
- Marcin Tybura (17-6, fighting out of Uniejow, Poland) and Serghei Spivac (10-1, fighting out of Chisinau, Moldova) meet in a battle of heavyweight hopefuls
- In a light heavyweight bout guaranteed to deliver fireworks, Ion Cutelaba (15-4, fighting out of Chisinau, Maldova) takes on Magomed Ankalaev (12-1, fighting out of Dagestan, Russia)
Tickets for UFC FIGHT NIGHT ON ESPN+®: BENAVIDEZ vs. FIGUEIREDO go on sale Friday, Jan. 10 at 10 a.m. ET. Tickets are available for purchase online at YnotTix.com. Ticket sales are limited to eight (8) per person.
Christopher James has been in the MMA industry for 15 years, Working as a ring announcer for promotions like the XFC, Island Fights, Combat Night and Fight Nights Global during his career. Chris’ love for the sport and the athletes that partake in it led him to writing and doing face to face interviews with the athletes he admired and respected. Chris isn’t conventional by any stretch of the imagination, he has his own style, and takes pride in not being a “cookie-cutter” member of the media. Unique and sometimes controversial takes are what he brings to the table, forcing folks to think a little differently about the world of MMA. He also has a love for music as he has been a dj for 25 years and his love for music gets brought to the MMA world when he gets his guests to sing on his weekly show Cage Side with Christopher James which can be seen Wednesday nights on FACEBOOK LIVE, and soon via podcast.