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Fallout Bellator 165: Did Michael Chandler Deserve His Win Over Ben Henderson?

Yes I’m a little late with this one but nevertheless, it’s still a topic that should be touched upon. These days it seems that judging mixed martial arts matches are getting more and more difficult. While one judge may focus on damage inflicted, others will focus on the technical aspects of the fight while yet another may be focused on how much control one fighter established over another. No matter how you slice it, things are as confusing as ever, even with the revamped judging criteria. The match up between Michael Chandler and Ben Henderson demonstrates that point perfectly.

The match started out heavily in Michael Chandler’s favor, landing a bunch of solid punches on Henderson’s chin. The former UFC lightweight champion survived the onslaught to come back and arguably take the second round. By the end of third frame however, Chandler did enough to get ahead in the score cards with some well placed strikes and wrestling.

Then round four begun.

Round four saw Chandler taking down Henderson multiple times only to find himself getting beat up from the bottom and defending multiple submission attempts. While many judges score takedowns heavily, the work that Henderson put in, particularly the ground and pound, was certainly more damaging and threatening than what Chandler offered up. This is where judging criteria becomes more murky and less of a science.

With Henderson taking the last round the fight was truly a toss up. Chandler was declared the winner but not without some controversy. MMA judging will always be an issue it seems and in the case of Chandler vs Henderson it reared its ugly head once again. One thing is certain, it’s a fight that should definitely be run back. Not just for the sake of the fans and the fighters, but to build even more interest and exposure for Bellator.

How did you score Michael Chandler vs Ben Henderson?


Jonathan Salmon is a writer, martial arts instructor, and geek culture enthusiast. Check out his Twitter and Facebook to keep up with his antics.

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