Joseph Benavidez vs. Ian McCall Targeted for UFC 156

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A flyweight match-up between Joseph Benavidez and Ian McCall will take place at UFC 156 on Feb. 2, according to various representatives close to McCall.

Alden Halpern of MMA Elite, a sponsor of McCall’s, announced through social media that the fight will be part of the Las Vegas Pay-Per-View.

“BREAKING NEWS!!! Ian McCall will fight Benevidez … on [the Feb. 2] card in Vegas,” Halpern posted on Twitter.

UFC officials have yet to announce the bout as confirmed.

McCall (11-3) last fought in a losing effort to current flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson at UFC on FX 3 in June. The fight was a rematch of their first encounter at UFC on FX 2 in March, which ended in a draw. Prior to the Johnson fights, McCall was considered the top flyweight in the world by several outlets, and a favorite to win the four-man elimination tournament to crown the UFC’s first flyweight champion.

Benavidez (16-3) also participated in the four-man tournament, and last fought in the final against Johnson, dropping a close split decision for the belt. The fighter out of Team Alpha Male was a winner of four consecutive fights before losing to Johnson, and the only other losses of his career are to current bantamweight champ Dominick Cruz.

Halpern added that another fighter close to the sponsor, Cisco Rivera, will also compete on the card.

UFC 156 will take place at the Mandalay Bay Events Center and is headlined by featherweight champion Jose Aldo defending his title against former lightweight champion Frankie Edgar.

The reported UFC 156 fights to date are as follows:

  • Jose Aldo vs. Frankie Edgard
  • Alistair Overeem vs. Antonio Silva
  • Rashad Evans vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
  • Jon Fitch vs Demian Maia
  • Urijah Faber vs. Ivan Menjivar
  • Joseph Benavidez vs. Ian McCall
  • Erick Silva vs. Jay Hieron
  • Cisco Rivera vs. TBA

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