That’s why Joseph Benavidez is surprised to hear that his last fight with Jussier Formiga, who he’ll rematch this week at UFC Minneapolis, was back in 2013.
“In my mind I thought it was, like, two years ago,” he says, smiling.
It’s common for fighters who have already met once to be dismissive of the original meeting, arguing perhaps that they were different fighters back then, they’ve changed so much, and so on. But Benavidez doesn’t deny there’s a mental edge that comes with having already bested an opponent, regardless of how far back it was.
“Of course,” he confirms. “I have the confidence to do it again, even though it was six years ago. My last opponent, Dustin Ortiz, I had a win over him [before the rematch]. I was confident I could go out there again. And I got it done.”