While Anderson Silva may be looking to move to the light heavyweight division, Dan Henderson expects to get one more crack at “The Spider” for the UFC middleweight championship.
“Hendo” had lost their first encounter at UFC 82 in March of 2008, after Silva submitted him in the second round with a rear-naked choke despite Henderson winning the first round. Henderson has been 3-0 since that fight, last defeating Michael Bisping at UFC 100 last month. He was scheduled to face Rich Franklin at UFC 103, but was dropped from that bout in favor of the returning Vitor Belfort. A rematch with Silva seemed to be a consolation prize for being dropped from the Franklin bout.
“I’m fighting him next,” Henderson told Fox Fight Game shortly after Silva’s bout with Forrest Griffin at UFC 101 last night. He went on to predict that he was “gonna beat him up.”
Henderson also talked about the mistakes that he felt Griffin made last night.
“Style wise, it just wasn’t a good fight for Forrest,” Henderson noted. “He didn’t have any tools in his toolbox that are better than Anderson’s. You know, Anderson’s just too slick for him, he hits really hard too, and Forrest just got hit on the button a few times and rocked early and never recovered.
“I expected Anderson to beat him up, maybe not quite as bad,” he admitted.
UFC President Dana White confirmed during a media conference call last week that Henderson would likely be next to face Silva for the title. He went on to reiterate that statement during the UFC 101 post-fight press conference last night, however that was before Silva talked to White about moving up a weight class. After that discussion, White was non-committal about Silva’s next bout.
“Who knows,” White stated after being asked if Henderson would face Silva next. “We’ll see what happens. In the talks I’ve had with Anderson, he wants to take on the best in the world. He’s the most talented fighter in the world, the best pound for pound fighter and it’s a joke to say anyone else is. And he wants to continue to prove [it].”