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Joseph Benavidez doesn’t need Henry Cejudo to legitimize flyweight title — ‘I already beat him’

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The Ultimate Fighter Finale: Benavidez v Cejudo Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Henry Cejudo is done with the flyweight division.

But he may have left behind some unfinished business in his haste to vacate his title and focus on the bantamweight ranks. Prior to capturing the 125-pound strap from Demetrious Johnson at UFC 227, “Triple C” lost a close decision to Joseph Benavidez in late 2016.

A loss he has no interest in avenging.

That’s just fine with Benavidez (28-5), who will battle Deiveson Figueiredo at UFC Norfolk next month in Virginia. The end goal for the longtime flyweight contender isn’t to rematch Cejudo, it’s to win the 125-pound title, regardless of opponent.

“It’s almost like an undisputed or whatever because I already beat Cejudo,” Benavidez told UFC Unfiltered (via Farah Hannoun). “Figueiredo is challenging me, whatever you want to look at it. Basically, a title is a title. The goal wasn’t to beat a certain person, it was to win a title, and that’s happening. I already beat the guy that has it now. The way I look at it is he gave it up without even a fight.”

Cejudo has been sidelined following shoulder surgery in the wake of his TJ Dillashaw victory roughly one year back and has yet to lock down an opponent for his first 135-pound title defense, though Jose Aldo and Petr Yan are both in the running.

He’s certainly not short on opponents.