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Tag: Dan Henderson

The 10 Greatest Light Heavyweight Title Fights In UFC History


(Photo via Getty)

By Adam Martin

That might be the greatest title fight in the history of the light heavyweight division — and I don’t even know who won! What an incredible fight!

Those are the words UFC color-commentator Joe Rogan uttered last weekend at the end of the five-round epic at UFC 165 between UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones and challenger Alexander Gustafsson, a fight Jones won via razor-thin unanimous decision.

Although Rogan is often known for his hyperbole, he might have been dead-on that night. Was “Bones” vs. “The Mauler” really the greatest 205-pound title fight in the history of the Ultimate Fighting Championship? To determine the veracity of that statement, I went back and watched the best light heavyweight fights ever held inside the Octagon, and after countless hours of tape study, I feel as though I’ve come up with a very fair list.

Below I’ve listed what in my opinion are the top 10 light heavyweight fights in UFC history based on a mixed criteria of competitiveness, excitement level, hype, how the fight played out in comparison to its expectations, and how it ended. So without any further ado, let’s get started…

10. Lyoto Machida vs. Mauricio “Shogun” Rua 1, UFC 104

(Photo via Getty)

Kicking off the list is the controversial first fight between Lyoto Machida and Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, a fight that still ranks up there with the worst-all time judging decisions in MMA history.

Machida had just knocked out Rashad Evans at UFC 98 and, in the fateful words of Joe Rogan, the “Machida Era” had commenced. However, “Shogun” had a thing or two to say about that as the former PRIDE star was coming off of two TKO wins over Hall of Famers Chuck Liddell and Mark Coleman, and he wanted to prove to everyone it was he, not Machida, who was the best light heavyweight in the world at the time.

For five rounds, Machida and “Shogun” went toe-to-toe in the Octagon and although Machida definitely had his moments in the match, it appeared to most observers that there would be a new light heavyweight champion crowned, as Rua landed a ton of brutal leg kicks to Machida that left the champ’s torso and thighs looking like a bruised peach.

But while “Shogun” arguably won every round of the fight, the judges somehow saw the fight in favor of Machida, with all three scoring the bout 48-47 in favor of “The Dragon” despite the volume of leg kicks thrown by Rua, leading judge Cecil People to idiotically declare that leg kicks don’t finish fights. UFC president Dana White saw things differently, however, and set up an immediate rematch at UFC 113 where Rua KO’d Machida into oblivion — a happy ending to an infamous screwjob.

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CagePotato Roundtable #26: What Is the Greatest Comeuppance in MMA History?


(Bro, you need a male nurse.)

After spending last week’s roundtable discussion paying tribute to the most foul people associated with our sport, this week we’ll be focusing on great comeuppances — cases when a fighter got too cocky and karma caught up with him mid-match. Some of our picks are knockouts, some are submissions, and all are extremely satisfying to relive. Read on for our picks, and please continue to send your ideas for future CagePotato Roundtable topics to tips@cagepotato.com.

Ben Goldstein


(Props: Esther Lin/MMAFighting.com)

It’s one of the most well-known (and feared) unwritten rules in baseball: You never jinx a no-no. When a pitcher has gone a few innings without giving up a hit, you shut the fuck up about it. Teammates aren’t supposed to acknowledge it in the dugout, broadcasters aren’t supposed to mention it on air. These days, you’re not even supposed to tweet about it. If you even so much as whisper the words “no hitter” into your sleeve from the bleachers, the baseball gods will smite you for your hubris and it’ll all come crashing down.

MMA offers all kinds of painful penalties for celebrating early, and you’d think that everyone would have learned the lesson by now. But every once in a while, some asshole comes along and claims that he’ll achieve some lofty feat way before he has any right to. Call it a jinx, call it karmic retribution, but those fighters tend to fall on their face, while the rest of us revel in their defeat. You shouldn’t have tempted fate, buddy. You should have stayed humble. You shouldn’t have jinxed the no-no.

If you’ve been following the UFC for a long time, you might remember a former lightweight champion by the name of Benson Henderson. (He was the guy who held the belt between Frankie Edgar and Anthony Pettis? Long, curly hair? He could do all things through Christ who strengthened him? Does any of that ring a bell?) Anyway, this Benson Henderson guy was known for edging out very close decision wins in title fights — the kind of fights that could have gone either way, but kept falling in his favor. He got a reputation as a point-fighter who never went in for the kill, who only took risks involving toothpicks.

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Thy Gangster’s Will Be Done: Chael Sonnen vs. Rashad Evans Set For UFC 167


(Further proof that Chael Sonnen is a direct descendant of Prometheus.) 

One of the most well known Bible verses is Matthew 6:10, which in the King James version reads: “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.” Although scholars believe that the verse was/is a plea for all of mankind to obey the will of God, recent evidence indicates that it was clearly describing the will of Chael P. Sonnen. For ye, whenever the “American Gangster” speaketh, so the UFC shall maketh it a reality.

Two days ago, we reported that the mushroom cloud of anger that Wanderlei Silva has become would have to wait until next year to rearrange Sonnen’s butt face (and to think, he coulda been in the NFL if it weren’t for his bum back). Being that Chael loves fighting more than Jack Donaghy loves negotiation, he figured he might as well keep busy while his (next) Brazilian nemesis recuperated by calling out his UFC Tonight co-worker Rashad Evans in “The Axe Murderer’s” place.

Which brings us to today’s announcement: The Oregonian will indeed be facing Evans at UFC 167, because shit happens when you were one half of the highest selling UFC PPV of all time. The event will mark the UFC’s 20th anniversary and will transpire at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on November 16th.

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Today in TRT News: Rothwell Jumps on the Testosterone Train, Brazilian Commission Loses Its Only Accredited Testing Facility


(Doughy, smooth IFL Ben and lean, hairy UFC Ben. Man, that acai berry stuff really works wonders.)

Ben Rothwell has requested and received a Therapeutic Use Exemption for TRT at his upcoming UFC 164 bout in Milwaukee. So has former heavyweight champ Frank Mir, but he’s no stranger to the TRT TUE game.

MMA Junkie obtained the information from the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services recently. According to Junkie, both fighters were not available for comment but Rothwell’s opponent Brandon Vera was.

“The Truth” was not amused. “It won’t help,” he said of Rothwell’s TRT use.

In a related story, legendary fighters and noted TRT users Vitor Belfort and Dan Henderson will indeed fight as we gave you a heads up about the other day; the match will be held at 205 pounds and it appears that neither fighter will face many obstacles in using TRT to their hearts’ content. Belfort has tested positive for a banned substance before, prompting the chief executive of the world’s most important athletic commission, the Nevada State Athletic Commission’s Keith Kizer, to opine that he didn’t think Vitor would ever be likely to receive a TUE for TRT in the state.

As states like Nevada and New Jersey go, so usually do the rest of the United States. Belfort has fought three out of his last four fights in Brazil with the other taking place in Canada. But hey, Brazil has a regulatory commission, right? They surely do: The Brazilian MMA Athletic Commission (CABMMA).

The doctor who serves as medical director for that commission, Marcio Tannure, recently told MMAFighting.com that “Henderson needs to send him the exams to prove his medical conditions (hypogonadism) to apply for a TRT use, and they will analyze the request,” and that Belfort has blood tested before and after fights to ensure that “his levels are good.” Usually, fighters with TUEs for TRT still have to maintain “normal” testosterone levels.

In the Southern hemisphere, the national Brazilian star Belfort is the one in good standing, his prior failed drug test not being a deterrent to CABMMA in granting him a TUE whereas Henderson, who is allowed his TUE in the states, is the one who appears to face more of a hurdle. Coincidence, I’m sure.

However, don’t expect either Belfort or Henderson to be denied TUEs for TRT because, well, CABMMA’s drug testing isn’t considered to be quite as legitimate by international standards any more. BloodyElbow has the info:

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Vitor Belfort vs. Dan Henderson Planned For Nov. 9th Brazil Card


(Vitor and Dan in 2006, tanned to the gills and ready to rock. / Photo via MMAWeekly)

On Tuesday’s installment of UFC Tonight, it was announced that the UFC is looking to book former champions Vitor Belfort and Dan Henderson against one another for a fight November 9th in Brazil. The fight would be a rematch of their October 2006 Pride 32 bout, which resulted in a decision win for Henderson and a steroid suspension for Belfort.

UFC Tonight did not specify what weight the fight would take place at; both men have campaigned at middleweight, light heavyweight and heavyweight in the past. However, it will be a safe bet that the TRT will be coursing freely through the veins of both future hall of famers, though, as Brazil ain’t exactly Nevada or New Jersey when it comes to drug testing credibility.

If Belfort agrees to the fight, it will be an interesting move given how fickle and picky he’s been with proposed match-ups in recent months. He’s turned down Tim Kennedy, ignored an offer from Lyoto Machida and said he wouldn’t fight at middleweight unless it was for the belt, before challenging Chael Sonnen (at what weight, no one knows). Sonnen accepted publicly but now it appears Belfort will go for Henderson — who is on a two-fight losing streak compared to Belfort’s two-fight win streak.

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Machida Accepts Belfort Fight, Says ‘What’s up Now?’


(Where’s your smart mouth now, playboy? | Photo via GQ Magazine Brasil)

Here at CP, we’ve been doing our best to bring you the latest developments between former UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida and UFC match maker Vitor Belfort. It first appeared that Belfort would fight Tim Kennedy, then that Belfort would fight Chael Sonnen, then that he would face Machida. When that plan stalled, the totally retired Nick Diaz was offered a fight with Machida at middleweight.

Now, Machida is saying that he has accepted a fight with Belfort and is using the “Phenom’s” own words to embarrass Vitor. “I’ve accepted the fight,” Machida recently told Globo.com, at least that’s what google translate tells us.

“And [I am] sure Vitor Belfort will accept, because, as he said, your son does not run from a fight.”

Ok, so here’s what that last part is about. Last year, when Jon Jones needed a last-minute replacement fight after Dan Henderson and Chael Sonnen had conspired against him and all of humanity, Machida was offered the title shot. He turned it down.

Something about needing more time to prepare to get choked out again, if we recall correctly. When Vitor Belfort accepted the fight against Jones, he seemed to passively aggressively put down Machida.

“I will fight Jones,” Belfort said back then.

“As a real Brazilian, as the [Brazilian National Anthem] says, ‘you will see that your son does not run from a fight.’”

Nicely played, Lyoto. That’s the type of acerbic wit that can only be sharpened by bitterness from losing decisions and having to drink a glass of urine each morning.

Do you think Vitor will accept the Machida fight and take him on in Brazil, taters? And, do you think Belfort will manage to pull Machida out of his shy shell and make the former dominant champ scrap?

- Elias Cepeda

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Friday Link Dump: Hendo Drops TRT, Redneck Technology, Comic-Con Cosplay + More


(MMA Nostradamus Alert: Jeff Curran predicts the future while preparing Felice Herrig for her Bellator 94 bout against Heather Clark. / Video via 1inchBoom)

Dan Henderson Explains Decision to Drop TRT Before UFC 161 (FiveOuncesofPain)

Daniel Cormier Tweets UFC 166 ‘Contract’ to Roy Nelson (BleacherReport)

Dana White Blasts Sports Illustrated for Suggesting Chris Weidman vs. Anderson Silva Was Fixed (MMAFighting)

Support Shown for MMA Bout Between Disabled Fighters (USAToday)

Matyushenko-M’Pumbu Headline Bellator 99, Freire-Nunes Set for 145 Tourney (MMAJunkie)

Brittney Palmer: Top 10 Sexiest Instagram Pics (FightDay)

The 15 Best Movies Inspired By True Events (Complex)

The Mens Fitness Sex Guide (MensFitness)

Real Life GTA-Style Driving [VIDEO] (DoubleViking)

The 20 Greatest Achievements In Redneck Technology History (WorldWideInterweb)

5 Accessories That Automatically Make You a Douchebag (EgoTV)

The 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi Is Already a Fiasco (SportsOnEarth)

Why Women Love Losers (MadeMan)

Hottest Comic-Con Cosplay, Day 1 (Break)

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UFC 161 + ‘Enter the Dragon’ Fight-Picking Contest: And the Winners Are…


(Enter The Dragon 40th Anniversary Ultimate Collector’s Edition cover image via Facebook.com/EnterTheDragonFilm. Buy a copy right here!)

The fact that Rashad Evans and Dan Henderson fought a tightly-matched, 15-minute battle on Saturday didn’t come as a surprise to many of you, who guessed some variation of a decision result in last week’s UFC 161 caption contest. But the first two people to guess that Evans would win by split-decision (29-28 x 2, 28-29) were Smitty and Ringo, who will both be receiving a copy of the Enter the Dragon 40th Anniversary Ultimate Collector’s Edition on Blu-ray, with all the exclusive documentary footage and collectible memorabilia and stuff. ‘ETD’ is a stone-cold classic no matter what format it’s in, so enjoy, and please send your real names and addresses to contest@cagepotato.com.

The other two people to submit exactly-correct guesses were Jason Moles, who is disqualified based on the rule that people who work for CagePotato aren’t eligible to win contest prizes — i.e., “ReX‘s Law” — and knuckleup101.2, who’s just out of luck, pretty much. But we appreciate you guys, really. (Okay fine, knuckleup, if you want a CP t-shirt, shoot your info to contest@cagepotato.com.)

Thanks to everybody who played, and props once again to Warner Bros. for the hookup!

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UFC 161 Aftermath: Winnipeg is For Lovers


Photo via Tom Szczerbowski/USA TODAY Sports

By Elias Cepeda

UFC 161 had some good fights to watch and learn from but if you’re one of the folks who paid the $217.00 or so that UFC pay per views now go for, and if you were drunk (those who do the former are often the latter during bouts) you may have been a bit disappointed with the action. In the main event, Rashad Evans turned up the heat in the third round against Dan Henderson and earned a split decision win.

The fight was close, and fought in spurts, but Evans looked impressive in coming back from being knocked down in the first round and in tiring Hendo and working the former Olympic wrestler over in his own sweet spot – the clinch. Evans gets back on the winning track but looks a long way from being able to challenge champion Jon Jones as he says he wants to once more.

Henderson certainly did not embarrass himself – he never has – but for the second consecutive fight, the forty two year-old looked to be the weaker and slower fighter in losing a close decision. Maybe that has to do with his age, maybe it has to do with the fact that both fights occurred against top light heavyweights.

Put the hard-earned legend of Henderson aside for a moment and remember that the man is a middleweight that, for reasons of crazy ability and guts, fights light heavyweights and heavyweights. Henderson is no where near a title shot at this point, in any division. It will be interesting to see how much motivation he has to keep fighting without more gold in his reach.

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UFC 161: Evans vs. Henderson — Main Card Results and Commentary


(No shoving? No forehead bumping? No repeated demands that one fighter treat the other like a bitch? Come on guys, you gotta give us *something* here. / Photo courtesy of MMAFighting.com)

The UFC makes its first stop in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, tonight, and yes, the lineup is somewhat garbage-ass. That’s what happens when you lose your original main event and then your co-main event due to injuries. But the show must go on, and we’ll be here liveblogging the pay-per-view broadcast all night, whether you join us or not. (Please join us. Please?)

On the menu for this evening: Rashad Evans and Dan Henderson try to avoid the gaping chasm of irrelevance, Roy Nelson goes for his fourth-straight knockout against Stipe Miocic, and highly regarded women’s bantamweight prospects Alexis Davis and Rosi Sexton make their debuts against each other. Plus, Pat Barry might leg-kick Shawn Jordan to death, and Ryan Jimmo might do the robot. Fingers crossed.

Handling our play-by-play is Anthony Gannon, who will be stacking live results from the UFC 161 main card after the jump beginning at 10 p.m. ET. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and throw in your own analysis in the comments section.

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