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Benson Henderson and Michael Johnson Agree to Fight

Matthew Wells

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UFC lightweight contenders Benson Henderson and Michael Johnson have agreed to meet in the Octagon via Twitter.

Over the past couple of days, Benson has called out a few choice opponents, regardless of weight class, who are not currently matched up for an upcoming fight. Michael Johnson, Tyron Woodley,  Anthony Pettis, and even light heavyweight champ Jon Jones  was targeted in tweets from Henderson.  The tweets definitely got the attention of those mentioned. Hinting at himself, Pettis suggested Henderson should fight someone significant other than Donald Cerrone or Khabib Nurmagomedov for his next fight. Woodley suggested to Dana White that Henderson and Johnson should fight while campaigning for his own fight with Johny Hendricks in St. Louis as a main/co-main headliner.

While Benson has certainly proved many times this year that he’s ready to fight anyone at any time, the tweets were not empty challenges to potential opponents. He was light-heartedly asking for an opponent by offering to be their “huckleberry” in search for a dance partner. The point he was proving is that trash-talk is not necessary to promote a fight. It would seem that Benson isn’t a fan of the build up of the upcoming featherweight title fight between Jose Aldo and Conor McGregor, which has been heavily promoted based on trash-talking.

In a matchup that would make the most sense to put Benson back on a title-shot trajectory,  sixth-ranked Michael Johnson offered to be Benson’s huckleberry.  Having both agreed to the bout over social media, it’s up to the UFC to sign off on the idea and get the contracts ready for signatures.

The 31-year old Henderson moved up in weight to get back on the winning track with an incredible fourth-round victory over Brandon Thatch in February. While moving up to welterweight to take a short notice fight was entertaining for the fans, Benson decided that his home and best shot at regaining UFC gold would be in the lightweight division.  The only fight that makes sense for Henderson right now is against Michael Johnson. Everyone else in the top 10 is already matched up, coming off a loss, or recently fought, and Benson is hungry to get back in the cage quickly. If (more like when) this fight is booked, Michael Johnson will be searching for his fifth win in a row in the most stacked division in the UFC.  A win over Benson would certainly put him in line for a number one contender fight to get a crack at the new champion, Rafael dos Anjos.

Below are all of the Twitter exchanges in order:

 

 

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Interviews

Exclusive: Derek Brunson: “Anderson was definitely a little lubed up”

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Derek Brunson fought Anderson Silva back in February of this year, at UFC 208. Brunson would go on to lose the fight by controversial unanimous decision. However, the controversies didn’t stop at the questionable decision, Brunson also claims Silva was greasing during the fight. The Wilmington, North Carolina native, posted about it on Twitter a few days ago:

Speaking with MMA Latest, Brunson explained why he believes Silva was greasing during the fight. “Anderson was definitely a little lubed up. Every time I grabbed him he was just slipping out of everything, and his takedown defense was really good that night. I was definitely curious to know why he was very slippery, which I definitely think he had some kind of substance on his body. He knows I’m a wrestler obviously, he’s an old, savvy veteran, so he was definitely trying to play all the rules and be very strategic, and make it harder for a wrestler to grab him.”

Brunson is set to face Lyoto Machida come October 28, when asked about whether he was worried about Machida greasing, considering Gegard Mousasi accused him of doing so in their fight, Brunson admitted he wasn’t too worried.

Well I’m not too worried, but like I said, I put it out there because I know they’re friends and I know, obviously, that’s kind of what the guys do when they know they’re fighting a wrestler. They want to lube their body up really good to make it hard to grab hold, Anderson did a great job defending my takedowns. It’s because he was all greased up so he was able to stop a lot of them. When I grab guys in the clinch, it’s very tough for them to get away and I’m pretty good with my Greco takedown. He was pretty much pulling through my clinch when I had a tight grip on him and if you have some kind of substance on your body it’s easy to pull them.”

Neither Silva nor his management have commented on the greasing allegations. Anderson Silva makes his return against Kelvin Gastelum later this year, in China. While Brunson makes his return to the Octagon on October 28th, in Brazil, where he looks to add Lyoto Machida’s name to his impressive list of victories.

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Announcement

Ovince Saint Preux Steps in to Face Corey Anderson at UFC 217

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UFC 217 just got even more interesting. Earlier this week, Patrick Cummins pulled out of his light heavyweight matchup with Corey Anderson due to a Staph infection. Corey “Overtime” Anderson was not happy with his opponents decision, even calling out his opponent on Instagram asking how Cummins could, “call it quits so far from fight night”.

The UFC left Anderson on the card, and he found an opponent through the magic of Twitter. Ovince Saint Preux tweeted out directly to Anderson stating:

It didn’t take long for Anderson to respond agreeing to the fight, tagging Mick Maynard and Dana White in his response.

Only a few short hours later, the fight announcement came from the official UFC twitter account.

 

This top 10 Light Heavyweight matchup should add to an already amazing card coming in November at Madison Square Garden. Saint Preux is coming off of back to back wins both due to the very rare von flue choke, he finds himself ranked #7th in the latest edition of the 205-pound rankings. Corey “Overtime” Anderson is 4-2 in his last 6 fights, but is coming off a brutal first round knockout loss to Jimi Manuwa in March.

With such a exciting fight added to this card, what do you see happening November 4th?  Will Corey Anderson bounce back and look to jump into the top 5 of the rankings, or will Ovince Saint Preux go for a third straight von flue choke? Let us know.

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Announcement

*Watch* Bellator 185 Weigh in: Live Stream, Results

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Watch the live weigh-ins for Bellator 185 here.

Gegard Mousasi takes on Alexander Slemenko live this Friday night October 20th at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville CT. This is the first appearance for Mousasi in the Bellator cage as he looks to secure a title shot with a win over the very tough former Bellator champion Slemenko. Joining these men of the main card will be a pair of welterweights as Neiman Gracie from the famous Gracie BJJ family takes on Zak Bucia in the co-main event.

Full Weigh-in Results: (Updated in real time)

Main Card:

Gegard Mousasi (185) vs. Alexander Shlemenko (186)
Neiman Gracie (170.5) vs. Zak Bucia (170)
Heather Hardy (126) vs. Kristina Williams (126)
Ryan Quinn (155.5) vs. Marcus Surin (155)
Ana Julaton (125.5) vs. Lisa Blaine (122)

Preliminary Card:

Jordan Young (200) vs. Alec Hooben (194)
Costello van Steenis (185) vs. Steve Skrzat (186)
Vinicius de Jesus (170) vs. Joaquin Buckley (171)
John Beneduce (154.5) vs. Dean Hancock (155)
Timothy Wheeler (144) vs. Pete Rogers (144)
Don Shainis (150) vs. Matthew Denning (149)
Frank Sforza (149) vs. Vovka Clay (150)
Kevin Carrier (156) vs. Jose Antonio Perez (153)
John Lopez (126) vs. Billy Giovanella (125)

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