Dan Henderson lost a split decision Saturday night to Lyoto Machida at UFC 157 in Anaheim, C.A. The fight wasn’t exactly the most entertaining bout ever, as Machida used his movement to quickly disengage from heavy exchanges. Although Machida was not the aggressor, his still managed to land the cleaner shots and avoid any damage besides a few leg-kicks. Dana White claimed the winner of this fight would get the next crack at the light-heavyweight strap, so it seems as if Machida will move on to get the winner of Jon Jones vs. Chael Sonnen taking place at UFC 159 on April 27 in New Jersey. In a fight that Henderson was far from dominated, I think it’s fair to say Henderson isn’t far from title contention.Â Here are some fight’s “Hendo” should take next.
- Â Loser of Alexander Gustafsson vs. Gerard Mousasi- Gustafsson is set to take on former Strikeforce light-heavyweight champ Mousasi on April 6 at UFC on Fuel TV 9 in Sweden. White has also said that if Gustafsson is to win, he would be getting the next shot at the title – which means this is a big fight for both contenders in regards to contender ship. Giving Henderson the loser gives him a chance to attempt to stay on the title hunt.
- Winner of Glover Teixeira vs. Ryan Bader- Teixeira has been on a tear as of late, beating down all of his UFC opponents since his debut. He is on an 18-fight win-streak and is right up there in the top of division. If he is to get past Bader, Teixeira versus Henderson for number-one contender seems like a logical matchup. On the flipside, Bader is 3-1 in his last for fights and seems to be getting better every fight, so if he manages to get past Teixeira, Bader versus Henderson would be a great stylistic matchup, as both fighters are great wrestlers and have heavy hands.
- Antonio Rogerio Noguiera- “Lil’ Nog” is coming off two big wins over two former light-heavyweight champions in Rashad Evans and Tito Ortiz, so a match-up between Nogueira and Hendo would be another great stylistic pairing due to the fact that Noguiera would probably be looking to exchange, but he has a solid jiu-jitsu game if the fight goes to the ground. Although Henderson wouldn’t have too much to gain from this fight, it would be a huge test for Nogueira, so this bout is certainly a possibility.