Joseph Benavidez, who challenged for the UFC flyweight belt, a staggering 4 times, announced his retirement from the sport of mixed martial arts. The news was first reported by MMA Junkie, after reports from several sources claimed that Benavidez had asked his name to be removed from the USADA testing pool.
It was then confirmed by his wife and UFC reporter Megan Olivi. Taking to Twitter Olivi wrote, “Retirement adventures are gonna be fun. My King Forever @JoeJitsu.” Joseph Benavidez is currently 37 years old, and had a career that lasted more than fifteen years.
Joseph Benavidez fought for the flyweight title four times!
Benavidez made his MMA debut on the 3rd of June, 2006 at Universal Fight Promotions. Following 10 successive wins, he took on Dominick Cruz at WEC 42, and was handed a unanimous decision defeat. His next loss was against Cruz as well, this time a narrow split decision loss at WEC 50.
He then moved to the UFC, and fought for the inaugural flyweight belt, against Demetrious Johnson, and once again suffered a split decision loss. A year later he challenged for the flyweight title again, against Johnson. This time, Benavidez was knocked out, in yet another unsuccessful attempt.
Following a number of victories against big names, Benavidez once again challenged for the flyweight title. This time against Deiveson Figueiredo in February 2020. He was knocked out the first time, but challenged the Brazilian, once again 5 months later. This time Benavidez suffered a submission defeat. His last fight was against Askar Askarov at UFC 259, which he lost via. unanimous decision.
He retired with a record of 28 wins and just 8 losses. Win or lose, Benavidez never failed to put on a warrior’s performance.