clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

UFC 225 results: Sergio Pettis scores narrow win over Joseph Benavidez

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Joseph Benavidez looked every bit a fighter who had not competed in a year and a half early in his UFC 225 fight with Sergio Pettis.

Pettis, meanwhile, looked every bit the 24-year-old up-and-comer who is slowly but surely becoming an elite competitor.

Then the fight developed into a back-and-forth battle over the final two rounds, but Benavidez never quite dug out of his early deficit. Pettis won the battle of flyweight contenders at Chicago’s United Center via split decision, getting scores of 29-28 and 30-27 to a 29-28 the other way.

“Definitely I was worried about it,” Pettis said. “He didn’t do much damage but he held me there and I know the judges score that. I had some fun in there.”

Pettis set the tone in the opening round by wobbling Benavidez with a right hand, then dropping him with an uppercut. Benavidez, who missed all of 2017 with a knee injury, never found his rhythm in the round, as Pettis stayed just out of range and landed frequent counters.

Benavidez, however, has superb cardio, and he began to pick up the pace in the second, moving forward an initiating clinches in which was a close round.

Benavidez again was the aggressor in the final round, but for every time he landed, Pettis had his moments, including twice turning Benavidez takedown attempts into guillotine chokes.

“I knew Joseph is very creative and very dynamic. .. I wanted to defend the takedown and I know I can outstrike the guy,” Pettis said.

With the win, Pettis is now 17-3 with five wins in his past six fights. Benavidez (25-5) had a six-fight win streak snapped.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the MMA Fighting Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your fighting news from MMA Fighting