UFC Fight Night 169 went down last night (Sat., Feb. 29, 2020) from inside Chartway Arena in Norfolk, Virginia. In the headlining act, Deiveson Figueiredo knocked out Joseph Benavidez in round two, ending “Joe Jitsu’s” championship dreams (highlights). In the co-main event, Felicia Spencer made quick work of Zarah Fairn and likely punched her ticket to a title fight, knocking her out in the very first round (see it again here).
Winner: Deiveson Figueiredo
Who He Should Face Next: Joseph Benavidez rematch ... wait, what?
The state of the Flyweight division became a bit more messy last night with Figueiredo’s win, who was ineligible to win the title after failing to make weight. Benavidez had the option to not take the fight after the scale fail, but proceeded to do so, taking 30-percent of his foe’s purse in the process. So give Benavidez points for that one. Furthermore, an inadvertent clash of heads split Joseph’s wig wide open, rocking him in the process. A few seconds later, he was knocked out. I don’t like the idea of Henry Cejudo dropping back down to challenge for the title he was stripped of. Jussier Formiga is ranked No. 2, but he is coming off a loss to Benavidez. That said, he does hold a win over Figueiredo. At this point, I don’t think there would be too much resistance and backlash if the promotion booked this rematch.
Winner: Felicia Spencer
Who She Should Face Next: Amanda Nunes
Megan Anderson did her thing in Norfolk, too, knocking out Norma Dumont with a devastating strike. That said, Spencer scored a win over Anderson not too long ago, so that gives Felicia some points and puts her firmly in the driver’s seat. Nunes doesn’t seem to care too much who she faces, probably because she is confident she can defeat them both. Still, Spencer provides a different challenge for “Lioness,” and since her lone loss inside the eight-sided cage came against Cris Cyborg, Spencer is a good candidate for a shot at the strap.
Winner: Magomed Ankalaev
Who He Should Face Next: Ion Cutelaba
I know what you’re thinking, ‘Ugh, another do-over.’ This one also makes sense, as last night’s stoppage was rather confusing. Cutelaba was adamant he was playing possum, and if you see it in slow motion, he was likely telling the truth as none of the shots Ankalaev threw really landed. That said, his acting was very good, as Cutelaba did enough to convince the referee on duty as well as the broadcasters that he really was hurt. While he won’t get an Oscar for his performance, he should, at the very least, get a rematch.
Winner: Megan Anderson
Who She Should Fight Next: I really don’t know ...
It’s sad that there still aren’t enough female Featherweights to complete the the top 15 for UFC. And with Cris Cyborg bolting for Bellator MMA, there is one less challenge for Anderson. That’s a fight I’ve wanted to see for some time now, but Anderson will have to look elsewhere. She also has a good case for a shot at the strap, but her loss to Spencer puts her in second place in my opinion. UFC can always convince a well-known Bantamweight to move up to challenge Anderson to keep her busy, or bring Invicta FC’s 145-pound champion, Pam Sorenson, up for a fight. At the end of the day, all Anderson can do is wait to see who UFC gives the next title shot and take it from there. If she gets it next, well that’s fine by me too.
Winner: Grant Dawson
Who He Should Face Next: Jordan Griffin
Both Dawson and Griffin proved victorious in Norfolk, with Grant taking out Darrick Manner via submission, while Griffin submitted T.J. Brown. Unfortunately for Dawson, he lost part of his fight purse after failing to make weight. Nevertheless, he is on a three-fight win streak and has looked pretty good as of late. Griffin, meanwhile, snapped his two-fight win streak in Norfolk, saving him from a potential pink slip.
For complete UFC Norfolk results and coverage click here.