“I think I showed good sportsmanship by stopping when I did,” says Dan Henderson of his controversial final blow to Michael Bisping at UFC 100 on MMAJunkie Radio. The fighter knocked out Bisping in the second round of their encounter last Saturday. But it was Hendo’s post-knockout blow and post-win comments that are drawing criticism from fans and the media alike.
After the fight, Hendo told Joe Rogan and the audience, “I believe I accomplished that [shut him up] for a little while. I don’t know if he’ll ever shut his mouth completely, though. Normally, I’m not that way in fights. I know if a guy is out, and I tend to stop. I knew I [knocked] him out. I think that last one was just to shut him up a little bit.”
Bisping and Henderson had a very public feud prior to the fight, which was caught on tape during the 9th season of The Ultimate Fighter: Team UK vs. Team US. Many say it was Bisping’s badmouthing of Henderson throughout the season that provoked the 185 pound fighter to deliver the final diving blow.
“It could have been anybody,” he said during the radio interview. “It just happened to be Bisping. Maybe I enjoyed it more. I had the exact same finish against Wanderlei Silva. I knocked him out and landed one more punch on the ground. It happened almost the same type of way . . . And I like and respect Wanderlei a lot more than I like Bisping, and it didn’t make a difference. It could have been anyone out there, and I was still going to do my job and finish the fight.
“I don’t think anyone would have had a problem or said a word about it if I wouldn’t have made that comment. Obviously I regret saying that, and it might have been in bad taste, but I was a little bit maybe emotional at the time, and it felt good to knock out Bisping like that.”
Maybe it was karma that left Hendo with a broken down car on the side of the road while driving home after the big win on Saturday night? The fighter was heading back to his home in Temecula when the Range Rover he was driving (which was given to him as a “Thank You” gift from Dana White for coaching TUF) broke down before the fighter even crossed the state line.
“Thanks for the car, Dana, hope it comes with a warranty!” Hendo joked on his website.
The car has since been fixed and was later driven by the fighter to the ESPY awards in Los Angeles.
Meanwhile, Henderson is hoping to get the next middleweight title shot against current champion Anderson Silva. The two have met in the cage before, ending with a second round submission win for Silva at UFC 82: Pride of a Champion. But Hendo says he is ready for another round with the champ.
“I think I’ve earned it more than anyone,” said Henderson, who owns a three-fight win streak with additional wins over Rousimar Palhares and Rich Franklin. “Dana knows that’s what should happen and that’s what I want, so we’ll see what happens.”