Number one flyweight contender Joseph Benavidez cemented his place at the top of the contenders’ list with his third straight win and second consecutive knockout, stopping Jussier Formiga in the first round.

The 125-pounders patiently made their way through the early part of the first round trying to find their range in this important matchup, and Benavidez found it first, jarring Formiga with a quick right hand and then knocking his foe down with a left knee to the body. Formiga turtled up and took a series of unanswered blows before referee Mario Yamasaki finally stopped the fight at the 3:07 mark.

Benavidez moves to 19-3 with the win; Natal’s Formiga drops to 15-3.


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