Posts Tagged ‘Benson Henderson’

By Jonathan King The Clinch Report

This weekend the UFC will put forth a pay per view caliber fight card, that will be featured for free on FOX. Not only will the lightweight title be on the line, but Strikeforce Heavyweight Champion Daniel Cormier will make his long anticipated debut in the UFC.

Jordan Mein  vs. Matt Brown  

The resurgent Matt Brown has proved that if a fighter wants to stay in the UFC he has to improve once he has arrived. Brown is in the midst of a 4 fight win streak, and is looking to solidify his chances for a possible contender slot. Mein is looking for his second UFC win after defeating the always game Dan Miller by TKO in his last outing. Mein should be technically proficient in the striking department, but Brown is notorious for his tenacity. Prediction: Brown via Split Decision

Nate Diaz  vs. Josh Thomson

Nate Diaz is one of the most talented fighters in the UFC. His boxing skill is unrivaled in the division, and even if you can put him on his back, his submission skills are just as refined. However, in his last performance Benson Henderson completely dismantled the Stockton native, beating him at his own game. Josh Thompson is no stranger to the Cesar Gracie team, having faced Gilbert Melendez 3 times already. Thompson is a hell of an athlete, who even at 34 years old is still extremely dangerous in the division. Prediction: Diaz via Unanimous Decision


Daniel Cormier  vs. Frank Mir

Frank Mir is and has been a top ranked heavyweight for nearly 10 years. As a former champion, he has the skill to end the fight in any position with either a strike, or a submission. He also does not like being considered a stepping stone (see Brock Lesnar first fight)! Daniel Cormier is the best wrestler in the division which alone presents problems, but Cormier can also turn out the lights with his heavy hands. Mir could very well grab a hold of a limb during a take down, but this fight might not ever make it there. Predictions Cormier via TKO RD 2


Benson Henderson* vs Gilbert Melendez 5 Round 155 lbs Title Fight (*Champion)

Finally, ‘El Nino’ Gilbert Melendez will be making his octagon debut, and he does so in an immediate title fight. Coming in as the Strikeforce champion Melendez for a long time has been considered one of the to 3 lightweight fighters in the world. His durable style suits either the quick knockout, or the five round battle. He sets up his powerful hands with excellent feigns, and has great take down skills as well. Benson Henderson is one of the biggest lightweight fighters around. The champions power begins with his tree trunk like legs, that power one of the most athletic frames in all of MMA. As a striker Henderson has great power, and even better timing, often beginning and ending combinations with balance shattering leg kicks. Once Henderson achieves top position, he is nearly impossible to sweep. Make sure you use the bathroom before the fight begins! Prediction: Henderson via Split Decision (Fight of the Night)

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http://http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=P8YQ8Z4Yo4I

Date: December 8, 2012

Location: Seattle, Washington

Venue: KeyArena

Broadcast: FOX, FX, Facebook

MAIN (FOX, 8 p.m. ET)

  • Benson Henderson vs. Nate Diaz – for lightweight title 

Analysis: Benson Henderson utilized a complete array of weaponry on the way to a clear unanimous decision. Living up to his moniker ‘Smooth” immediately attacked the legs of Nate Diaz, at times even landing lead left hand jabs to the legs. Diaz never was able to gain any clear offense, with the exception of a few submission attempts that were never really close. Henderson landed over 130 significant strikes to only 20 for Diaz.

Winner: Benson Henderson via Unanimous Decision (50-43, 50-45, 50-45)

  • Alexander Gustafsson vs. Mauricio “Shogun” Rua

Analysis: Alexander Gustafsson came into the fight with a possible title shot looming, but with the immediate task of standing toe to toe with Mixed Martial Arts legend Maurico ‘Shogun’ Rua. ‘Shogun’ has made a living landing  his dynamite packed right hand. And tonight was no different, it landed often. Only this time the man on the receiving end continued to walk through them. Utilizing his clear reach and size advantage ‘The Mauler’ systematically took apart a mix martial arts legend with an arsenal of strikes rivaled only by Jon Jones. Landing at will with several powerful range-effective strikes, Gustafsson absorbed everything Rua could throw at him, and seems to be on his way to a title shot!

Winner: Gustafsson Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26)

  • Rory MacDonald vs. B.J. Penn

Analysis: Rory MacDonald took steps to solidify his place in the welterweight division, in doing so he also vanquished a legend at least in the 170 lbs division. B.J. Penn promised a new improved aggressive B.J. Penn, and for about 1 minute it seemed he was making good on his promise. But then a liver-rattling kick, and a few elbows from MacDonald clearly erased that aggressiveness.  MacDonald shadowed the smaller Penn cutting off half of the cage. Landing at will, MacDonald nearly finished Penn with a barrage of strikes that had Penn failing a field sobriety test. Penn was able to get his feet back but was unable to finish the fight.

Winner:  Decision MacDonald Unanimous Decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-27)

  • Matt Brown vs. Mike Swick

Analysis: Matt’The Immortal’ Brown started the main card off exactly where the preliminary card ended. With a devastating knockout. Brown was able to utilize his superior wrestling to keep former contender Mike Swick off balance for the entire first-round. The veteran Swick was able to escape a very tight submission attempt only to eat a few shots at the bell. As the second round began, Swick seemed more comfortable controlling the distance with his boxing. Ducking under a pawing right hand, Brown delivered a wild I.Q changing left hand that immediately put the lights out. Two more punches as Swick fell were the exclamation point as the referee stepped in.

 Winner: Matt Brown rd 2 TKO

UFC 144 Fight card Analysis Part 1

by Jonathan M. King

Yoshihiro Akiyama versus Jake Shields

Jake Shields is looking to break out of the fighting and life doldrums. Following his title loss to St. Pierre, Shields lost his father and manager Jack suddenly at the age of 67. Jack Shields was a great mentor and friend to several of the Cesar Gracie fighters, and his loss is still being felt. After the death of his father, Shields then saw his contenders position smashed away by Jake Ellenberger knees. In just 53 seconds, Shields for the first time lost consecutive fights. He will be looking to rebound against Yoshihiro Akiyama who is coming down in weight, following his 3 consecutive losses at the 185 lbs weight class. Although on the later end of his career “SexyYama” is still a dangerous striker. Prediction: Shields submission rd 1

Yushin Okami versus Tim Boetsch

Yushin Okami posesses that rare combination of pedigree, performance, and longevity in MMA, he earned his ass whooping at the hand of Ander son Silva. Tim Boetsch has been grinding out wins, by his whole career. Grappling himself either into a decision win, or submission victory in 5 of his last 6 wins. In his last 16 fights Yushin Okami has lost to Jake Shields, Anderson Silva, and Chael Sonnen, and Rich Franklin; with the Silva fight being the only one that ended early. With his history of fighting on big stages, Prediction: Okami via Decision

Hatsu Hioki versus Bart Palaszewski

After winning in his octagon debut against George Roop, Hatsu Hioki is looking to continue his rise to the top of the division. This time Hioki will stand toe to toe with Bart Palazewski. Palazewski is coming off an impressive octagon debut of his own, seeing him knock out UFC vet Tyson Griffin in 2:45. This bought is another classic showdown between striker and submission fighter, however the submission fighter (Hioki) has never been knocked out! Prediction: Hioki via submission rd 2

Anthony Pettis versus Joe Lauzon

First of all, this is my prediction for fight of the night. With 21 wins in his MMA career, Joe Lauzon seems to always be the underdog. His last fight against Melvin Guillard was meant to be a launching point for Guillard’s title shot. However, 47 seconds into round 1, Lauzon dropped and choked out those fiery title hopes. Anthony Pettis has fought and beat just about everyone he has been in front of, including the man challenging for the division title, Benson Henderson. Prediction: Pettis via decision

 


Edson Barboza(10-0 MMA) recently solved Terry Etim’s(15-4 MMA) sleeping disorder at UFC 142, by introducing him to heal therapy. Barboza’s spinning heel kick landed squarely across Etim’s jaw, instantly forcing his limp body to fall dramatically. like a fallen tree.
As the crowd watched in shock, the referee dove to protect the unconscious fighter. In his native Brazil, initial shock briefly staved off Barboza’s celebration. However soon, the young fighter was in tears as he celebrated in his native tongue!

The knockout overshadowed a very good performance by Terry Etim. The three rounds leading up to the knockout were very entertaining, and the UFC acknowledged that by awarding the bout “Fight of the Night” honors. For their efforts each fighter was awarded a $65,000 bonus. Barboza, also earned another $65,000 with the flashy “Knockout of the Night” bonus. The payday was by far the young Brazilian’s largest to date. The attention has already put Barboza’s name in mouths of pundits as a possible contender for the 155 lb title.

Barboza has a very rough road ahead, before he can be ready for those expectations. The lightweight division, is by far the UFC’s deepest division, regarding talent. With fighters such as Renan Berao, Donald Cerrone, Nate Diaz, Benson Henderson already underneath champion Frankie Edgar, Barboza’s success is still not assured.

In order to make it to the elite ranks in the lightweight division, Edson Barboza will most likely have to face a fighter such as: Joe Lauzon, Thiago Tavares, Sam Stout, or even Melvin Guillard or Jim Miller. If Barboza can show his striking prowess against fighters of this caliber, then it will be time to start putting expectations on time-lines. Until then, just make sure to tune in for his fights, because they are usually exciting.