After losing to Dan Henderson via split decision at UFC 93, Rich Franklin says he is ready to get back in the octagon with the fighter. In a recent interview with Extreme Fighter magazine, Franklin says he needs to take care of some unfinished business with Hendo.
“It’s difficult for me to accept losing a fight when really, I never ended up getting hit flush at any point in that fight where I was like ‘Wow’, not even when we were on the ground,” Franklin said of their first fight.
“The only time that he mounted any kind of damage on the ground was midway through the first round when he had me against the cage, but still, nothing really landed. Even when he had me against the cage, he couldn’t land a punch to my head so he had to resort to kneeing me in the back of the leg, and I stood up from there. From that point on, I just don’t feel that offensively he did a whole lot in that fight, and I did.”
Franklin also felt that he did more damage to Henderson in their first fight, stating, “I was very effective on the feet if you look at the punch stats. I don’t think that the judges took the amount of body shots and body kicks I was landing into consideration. At the end of the fight there was more damage inflicted on him than there was on me. He was able to take me down a couple times, but I was able to get back up. Even when I didn’t get back up he wasn’t able to advance out of my guard or improve position.”
Franklin does admit that Hendo did do some damage through his headbutts and eye poke, but not enough to earn him the win. The controversial loss is fueling Franklin’s desire to fight Henderson for the second time at UFC 103. But the fighter said on MMAjunkie.com radio that he is not sure which weight class he needs to prepare for. He says he hasn’t been told definitely, but that he’s “assuming” the fight will be at light heavyweight, partially because it shouldn’t hurt Henderson’s place in the middleweight division.
“Even if he lost to me at 205, it shouldn’t affect his standing at 185 pounds,” Franklin noted. “So I’d assume the UFC would do this fight at 205.”