November 19th 2011 saw perhaps the most entertaining and the most to and fro battle between Dan ‘Hendo’ Henderson and Mauricio Rua in the UFC light heavyweight division history.
Rua is a Brazilian superstar with some of the most vicious knockouts in MMA. His Muay Thai has long been considered one of the most complete is all of mixed martial arts and before the epic battle with Hendo it was expected that he would use his kicks to get the advantage over his opponent.
Dan Henderson is a former American Olympic level Greco roman wrestler with over 12 years of MMA wars where he has won the Pride Championship Gold in Japan and the Strikeforce Gold in the US. He is someone who fought in various divisions Middle Weight 185 pounds (83kgs), Light Heavyweight 205 pounds (93 kgs) as well as Heavyweight 206-265 pounds (94-120kgs).
The fight always had the ingredients for being an explosive fight on paper with Shogun’s kick boxing (Muay Thai) and Hendo’s right hand and his excellent wrestling. But no one could have expected the battle would be so one sided at the start of the fight in Hendo’s favour and so in Shogun’s favour in the latter half of the fight.
The way the fight played out, Hendo connected with his stiff right hand and dropped Shogun and continued to dominate Shogun and even came close to finishing him on an number of different occasions. Usually all non-title fights are scheduled for 3- 5min rounds, however the UFC promotion has launched this new initiative where big non-title fights are now 5- 5min rounds. Had this been a normal 3 round fight, Hendo would have easily dominated in a unanimous decision however no one could have predicted the last two rounds.
Shogun found back in the 4th despite having been cut and despite having taken an enormous amount of beating. He was able to put the wrestler Dan Henderson on his back and was able to ‘mount’ Dan and do some impressive’ ground and pound’ and this continued in the 5thround. Many felt that the last round was so utterly one sided that Shogun should have won it 10-8.
For anyone who has not seen this fight, we would strongly recommend you take a look. Hopefully you too will become a believer in the prophecy that mixed martial art (MMA) is indeed the ‘fastest growing sport in the world.’