On Saturday night in New Orleans two middleweight veterans will be vying to make a statement and get back into the discussion within the 185 division. Tim “The Barbarian” Boetsch and Dan “Hendo” Henderson will be meeting for a 5 round main event, a very important bout for both fighters as they are recently coming off of fights in which they were both dominated in. The main storyline to follow throughout this weekend will be what does Henderson have left? Dan Henderson is coming to the tail end of his legendary career and if he is unable to get a win over Boetsch there will be little left for him in the UFC, he has fought a murders row of killers in his last 8 fights but only winning 3 of them it maybe time to hang it up if he can’t get the W.
Dan Henderson is 44 years old and has been a part of the some of the biggest and best fights in his illustrious career. From capturing both belts in Pride FC, upsetting Fedor Emelianenko or his bloody battle with Shogun, Henderson has been and will always be one of the best fighters of this era. Unfortunately for Henderson, father time seems to be catching up with him, nothing more evident than this is/was his need of testosterone replacement therapy, sadly for him as it is now illegal to use when competing in a mixed martial arts bout. Furthermore, if we look at his record it starts to slide right after his epic battle with Shogun, a fight that will live on as one of the best ever between two legends of the sport, but there is a possibility that during the fight he took too much damage and it caused his body to start pumping the brakes on his career.
Looking at this fight with Tim Boetsch, Henderson has to show himself that he has the ability to keep fighting in the UFC, he needs this win and he needs it bad. Nowadays when Henderson fights it seems that if he wins or loses is based on his ability to land what Mauro Ranallo dubbed the “H-Bomb”, his powerful right hand, the same right hand that he’s knocked out the likes of Fedor and Michael Bisping. The problem is that he hasn’t been landing it too often, he was able to catch Shogun after a weird scramble but besides that hasn’t seen success with it since 2011. He likes to set it up with a left inside kick and come over the top with it but fighters see it, it’s clear as day that’s what he does and he still depends too much on it. The reason he depends on it now could because that’s all he has left in his arsenal, and looking at the Boetsch fight that really is the only way I could possibly see him win.
Tim Boetsch, though much younger than Henderson is also in a fight that is must win. If he loses to Henderson, he basically needs to start over in the middleweight division, he gained so much from his 4 fight win streak that was capped by a shocking comeback KO over former title challenger in Yushin Okami and then he had strange upset split decision over Hector Lombard. Ever since that streak he has gone 2-4, most recently losing to Thales Leites by submission. Currently ranked in the top 15, a win over Henderson shouldn’t do much for his ranking but anytime you can beat a name like Henderson it will certainly help your exposure to the fans. More importantly Boetsch has to beat Henderson in dominate fashion, if he wins by decision it will most likely do him more harm than good as Henderson is aging and hasn’t looked great recently.
During this fight with Dan Henderson it will be of the utmost importance for Tim Boetsch to remember to keep circling to his right, away from the power right hand of Henderson. Boetsch will want to use his youth to his advantage, to keep moving and try to keep the pace high to tire the older Henderson. Boetsch has some underrated kicks as well but may want to keep them to a minimal as they sometimes open you up to have a big punch land against you. Boetsch’s best offensive comes close within the clinch range as he too is very powerful, and even though Henderson is a greco roman wrestler it seems he has gotten away from his roots and Boetsch should have advantage in the clinch by being the bigger more physical fighter. Boetsch has to wade through fire to win this fight, he will have to reach the clinch and look to do damage there, all the while being very cognizant of Henderson’s right hand. It would be beneficial for Boetsch to attempt a takedown when he achieves the clinch as well, though a different beast, Daniel Cormier had great success on the ground with Henderson.
At the end of the night I see Tim “The Barbarian” Boetsch’s hand being raised. I foresee Boetsch grinding out a decision in a less than spectacular fashion, using his clinch work against the cage to do damage and land an occasionally takedown, but never doing enough damage to put the veteran Henderson away. I don’t think Henderson will be able to hit the “H-Bomb” and will now be on a 3 fight losing streak with a lot of questions surrounding his career. The even more unfortunate side of this that it may be one of the last times we see Dan Henderson step into the Octagon, as his days as a competitor are limited by father time.
Exclusive: Derek Brunson: “Anderson was definitely a little lubed up”
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:
Just make sure you don’t put cooking oil all over your body like Anderson did so it’ll be easy to grab ahold of you @lyotomachidafw 👌
— Derek Brunson (@DerekBrunson) October 17, 2017
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.
Ovince Saint Preux Steps in to Face Corey Anderson at UFC 217
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:
— Ovince Saint Preux (@003_OSP) October 19, 2017
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.
Fight News update!!
— UFC (@ufc) October 19, 2017
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.
*Watch* Bellator 185 Weigh in: Live Stream, Results
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)
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)
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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