Dan Henderson will fight Mauricio Shogun Rua at UFC 139 in a battle of light heavyweight contenders. UFC president Dana White told reporters this week that Henderson is under consideration for a UFC middleweight title match with a win. So what am I missing?
Dana White made this odd comment on Wednesday during a UFC 136 press conference. White was asked about UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva’s next fight. Predictably, White said that the winner of Brian Stann vs. Chael Sonnen would be under consideration. Unpredictably, White also mentioned that Dan Henderson would not only be under consideration with a win, but that Henderson vs. Silva 2 would actually be taking place if not for Silva’s injury.
White was also very specific about Henderson’s chances on a rematch with a win over Rua.
“It would be tough to say that if Henderson beats ‘Shogun’ that Henderson doesn’t deserve the shot.”
The UFC has been awarded a gift with Dan Henderson. You have a guy that just came off one of the biggest wins in MMA this year. You have a guy that left the UFC on an undefeated streak. You also have a guy that is coming back to the organization as light heavyweight champion elsewhere. The money here is at light heavyweight, so why in the world is this fight even under consideration?
Does Henderson even deserve a rematch? He lost his last fight at middleweight. He did leave the UFC as the number one contender at middleweight. But he hasn’t won a middleweight fight in over two years. Even Vitor Belfort had to come back and get at least one win at middleweight…oh wait no he didn’t. As a matter of a fact, Vitor was awarded a title fight after a win outside of the division as well. So maybe this is the norm?
Don’t get me wrong. I’d love to see Dan Henderson vs. Anderson Silva in a rematch. However, if that is the direction that the UFC is going, why are they matching him up against Shogun Rua? So what does Shogun gain by defeating Henderson? To me, it appears that Shogun has everything to lose and nothing to gain by beating a top “middleweight contender” right?
This is the same kind of logic that used to drive most MMA fans crazy with Strikeforce. I know that Zuffa bought Strikeforce, but did their nonsensical matchmaking come with it? This just makes absolutely zero sense.
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