Deiveson Figueiredo missed weight early Friday ahead of Saturday’s UFC Norfolk headlining scrap against Joseph Benavidez (28-5 MMA, 15-3 UFC) for the flyweight title.
The bout will proceed as scheduled, but Figueiredo is ineligible to win the 125-pound championship. Only Benavidez can win the belt that was recently vacated by bantamweight kingpin Henry Cejudo.
Figueiredo tipped the scales at 127.5 pounds, 2.5 pounds over the limit. He has to forfeit 30 percent of his purse.
These developments haven’t impacted the odds for Benavidez-Figueiredo. As of early this afternoon, most books had Benavidez listed as a -145 or -150 favorite, leaving Figueiredo as a +130 underdog.
This is Benavidez’s third shot at UFC gold. He lost a split decision to Demetrious Johnson for the belt at UFC 252. Then in the rematch at UFC on FOX 9 in December of 2013, Johnson defeated Benavidez by first-round knockout.
The 35-year-old Benavidez has posted a 9-1 record in his 10 Octagon appearances since losing for the second time to Johnson, including a split-decision triumph over Cejudo. The only loss in this stretch was a split-decision defeat to Sergio Pettis.
Figueiredo (17-1 MMA, 6-1 UFC) has three knockouts and one submission victory in his seven-fight tenure with the promotion.
The only play I’m endorsing on the UFC Norfolk card is ‘under’ 2.5 rounds for a heavyweight showdown between Serghei Spivac vs. Marcin Tybura. Bets on the ‘under’ were listed at a -135 price as of early Friday afternoon.
Nine of Spivac’s 11 career fight have ended in Round 1. None of his bouts have gone beyond the second round.