UFC flyweight champ Demetrious Johnson will defend his belt for the first time on January 26 and a week later the organization will apparently move a step closer to crowning a new #1 contender when Ian McCall mixes it up with Joseph Benavidez at UFC 156. Both men participated in the UFC’s four-man tournament to crown the company’s inaugural 125-pound champion and are considered to be among the division’s elite.
Though not officially announced, sponsor MMA Elite revealed the rumble on Twitter, also hinting bantamweight Francisco Rivera would be on the February 2 card.
McCall has yet to taste victory in the Octagon, fighting Johnson to a Draw in March before finally falling by decision a few months later. He holds an overall record of 11-3-1 with seven wins by way of stoppage.
While McCall came close to earning a crack at UFC gold, the 16-3 Benavidez actually emerged with a victory in his semifinal scrap, though he too came up short on the scorecards against Johnson in the eventual title-fight. In addition to his success at 125 pounds, Benavidez was also a stand-out competitor at bantamweight, picking up wins over Jeff Curran, Eddie Wineland, and Miguel Torres.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC