TV cameras captured the stunned reaction of UFC broadcaster and wife of flyweight contender Joseph Benavidez as he fell to a shock defeat in his title fight at UFC Norfolk.
Olivi is well known in the sport of MMA as a regular face of UFC programming. She often hosts fan Q&A sessions, and is a regular face on ESPN’s live UFC broadcasts.
But as well as being a well-liked and respected part of the MMA community as a media member, Olivi is also the wife of longtime UFC flyweight contender Benavidez, and the pair are often seen hanging out during fight weeks, even when Benavidez isn’t competing.
This weekend, however, was a little different. Benavidez was fighting for the vacant UFC flyweight title and Olivi had been given the weekend off to devote all her attention to her husband’s exploits.
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There was drama on Friday when Benavidez’s opponent, Brazilian Deiveson Figueiredo, dramatically missed weight for the title fight, scuppering the Brazilian’s chances of winning the title. But Benavidez still had a shot at the gold if he accepted the fight.
He duly did just that and accepted the matchup, as well as 30% of Figueiredo’s fight purse. But on fight night itself, things didn’t go Benavidez’s way as he was stopped by the Brazilian in the second round.
— TheLegend (@RyanGill19) March 1, 2020
Olivi, watching from behind UFC commentators Brendan Fitzgerald and Michael Bisping, was caught on camera as Figueiredo moved in for the finish as she leapt from her seat and appeared to mouth, “Oh s**t!”
It was a reasonable reaction given Benavidez’s bad-luck relationship with the UFC flyweight title.
It was his third attempt to capture the title, after his first two bids were thwarted by MMA all-time great Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson in 2012 and 2013.
And, despite staying at the top end of the UFC’s flyweight contender list ever since, Benavidez had to wait for more than six years before getting his next shot at gold.
Now his latest title fight defeat, which he described as a “nightmare,” has left many fans wondering if he would ever get another shot again.
But, considering he was beaten by a man who failed to make weight in a fight he was well within his rights to walk away from, it’s possible the pair could meet again later this summer with the vacant belt on the line once again.
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