Joseph Benavidez was looking to get back into the win column at UFC 259 against Askar Askarov.
Benavidez was returning after back-to-back stoppage losses to Deiveson Figueiredo for the flyweight title. After the setbacks, he admitted it was his final title shot. He also had to find his love for MMA again.
After some months off, Benavidez made his return at UFC 259 against undefeated flyweight, Askar Askarov. It was a very intriguing matchup. As well as a good test to see where Benavidez is in terms of the flyweight elite.
Unfortunately for Benavidez, the fight did not go his way. He was dominated by the Russian and lost all three rounds. Now, days after the loss, the former UFC title challenger released a statement on the loss.
“Just want to say thank you for everyone who supported or reached out before during and after,” Benavidez wrote on Instagram on Monday. “Tough night and I have so many thoughts. I’m just taking it in stride but wanted to show appreciation for the support and the opportunity to compete.”
Although Joseph Benavidez is now on a three-fight losing streak, UFC president, Dana White says he doesn’t need to have a conversation with him. Normally, when fighters start losing a couple in a row, White is adamant he wants them to retire. Yet, that won’t be the case for the future Hall of Famer in Benavidez.
After the loss, it is uncertain when and if Benavidez will fight again. The 36-year-old is 28-8 as a pro and before the three straight losses he did beat Jussier Formiga, Dustin Ortiz, and Alex Perez. He also holds notable wins over Henry Cejudo, Tim Elliott, and Ali Bagautinov.
If this is the end of the road for Joseph Benavidez, he would go down as one of the best flyweights of all-time.