Deiveson Figueiredo tests positive for COVID-19

Deiveson Figueiredo
NORFOLK, VA - FEBRUARY 29: Deiveson Figueiredo celebrates after defeating Joseph Benavidez in their flyweight championship bout during the UFC Fight Night event at Chartway Arena on February 29, 2020 in Norfolk, Virginia. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

UFC flyweight top contender Deiveson Figueiredo has tested positive for the coronavirus. “Deus Da Guerra” was due to fly out for his rematch with Joseph Benavidez for the men’s flyweight title on July 25th. The Brazillian had defeated Benavidez in their first matchup at UFC Fight Night 169 but did not qualify to win the belt because he had missed weight. But before he boarded his flight to “Fight Island” he tested positive for COVID-19, Combate reports.

Deiveson Figueiredo tests positive for COVID-19

According to Figueiredo’s team, the fighter actually first tested positive for the virus two months ago but appeared to be on track to recovery. They are hopeful that a final last chance test on Sunday will show the virus has completely vanished from his system.

If Figueiredo passes the test on Sunday, he will be able to leave for Fight Island. If he does not, the UFC will be forced to look elsewhere for a replacement opponent for Benavidez. Alternatively, they might seek to reschedule the fight. The UFC flyweight belt has been vacant for almost eight months ever since it was stripped from then-champion Henry Cejudo for inactivity, some time before Cejudo himself retired. The division has often been troubled. When Demetrious Johnson was champion the UFC often found themselves disputing with their champion overpay. But since “Mighty Mouse”‘s departure in August 2018, the belt has only been defended once.

Deiveson Figueiredo tests positive for COVID-19

The hard-hitting 125lb fighter is not the only title hopeful who has tested positive. Gilbert Burns also tested positive prior to his scheduled fight with champion Kamaru Usman for the welterweight strap. Jorge Masvidal came in on a week’s notice to replace him. It is unknown who would replace Figueiredo at this juncture. Current #4 ranked flyweight contender Alexandre Pantoja will also be fighting at UFC Fight Night 172, however.

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