Benson Henderson
Smooth

USA

Adds to winning streak with split decision
LightweightBellator
April 28, 2019
Henderson defeated Adam Piccolotti via split decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29) at Bellator 220 on Saturday in San Jose.
ANALYSIS
Henderson started slow against the 30-year-old Piccolotti, who had also been looking to build on a two-fight winning streak. Piccolotti successfully landed a takedown early, and rained down punishment that nearly ended the fight. Henderson got back up and returned fire with a vengeance, though he undoubtedly dropped the first frame. Henderson bounced back with his own takedown in the second that featured multiple submission attempts, and was enough for him to take that round. The third round is the one that was up for grabs, as Piccolotti was successful getting takedowns, but wasn't able to do a whole lot with them. Henderson was able to land strikes during his brief time on the feet, and that was enough to sway the judges, though it won't necessarily be the most popular decision.
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Turns in vintage performance against Saad Awad at Bellator 208
LightweightBellator
October 14, 2018
Henderson defeated Saad Awad via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-26, 30-26) at Bellator 208 on Saturday in Uniondale, N.Y.
ANALYSIS
To call this performance anything less than a vintage Henderson fight would be erroneous. For nearly the entire fight, Henderson stayed at either kicking range or in a grappling situation. At range, he landed multiple body kicks. In the clinch, he worked for and scored some takedowns. He also landed knees and stayed busy in the clinch. Fans of Henderson were likely inspired that he was able to produce yet another performance like this at this stage of his career. After the fight, he verbally scolded Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov for their post-fight brawl. He obviously will not fight either one of them, but he should move back up the Bellator lightweight ladder.
Gets back on track with a submission seconds into round two at Bellator 196
LightweightBellator
April 6, 2018
Henderson defeated Roger Huerta via submission (guillotine choke) at 0:49 of Round 2 at Bellator 196 on Friday in Budapest, Hungary.
ANALYSIS
Henderson really needed to win this fight and look good. Mission accomplished. He was all over Huerta from the start. In the first round, he landed with multiple kicks, knees and hard punches. He also controlled multiple wrestling exchanges. Huerta came out looser in the second round, but he lost his footing on a kick. As he tried to scramble back to his feet, Henderson caught him in a guillotine and finished the fight. Henderson really needed this win, and he delivered. Huerta might be well past his prime, so it remains to be seen if Henderson is really a contender again.
Given 180-day medical suspension after Bellator 183
LightweightBellator
September 28, 2017
Henderson received a medical suspension of 180 days from the California State Athletic Commission following his Bellator 183 loss to Patricky Freire, MMAFighting.com reports.
ANALYSIS
Henderson suffered his second split decision loss in a row. After losing to Michael Chandler and undergoing ACL surgery, Henderson came back and put forth a decent effort only to come up short. This fight with Freire wasn't exciting by any means, but it hosted a lot of back-and-forth action. However, Freire was able to fend off many of Henderson's takedown attempts and worked well against the cage to pull out a victory. During the fight, Henderson sustained possible left rib and left fifth metacarpal injuries. As a result, the CSAC has given him a 180-day medical suspension, pending medical clearance. Freire also received a similar suspension.
Drops another decision in the main event of Bellator 183
LightweightBellator
September 24, 2017
Henderson lost to Patricky Freire via split decision (28-29, 28-29, 29-28) at Bellator 183 on Saturday in San Jose, Calif.
ANALYSIS
Henderson's fighting style seems to always lead to controversial decisions. On some occasions, Henderson is the benefactor, and other times, he is the victim. This fight was not a robbery, but a case could be made for either fighter winning. It would be too harsh to call Henderson's run in Bellator a disaster, but he has failed to live up to expectations. After four fights, he has suffered three losses. His only victory during the stretch came when Patricio Freire was injured in the middle of the fight. It is true that Henderson has faced tough opposition, but his days in the title picture appear to be over.
Locks in fight at Bellator 183
LightweightBellator
June 25, 2017
Henderson (knee) will fight Patricky Freire at Bellator 183 on September 23, Danny Segura of MMAfighting.com reports.
ANALYSIS
Henderson has lost two of his last three bouts, but was reportedly fighting on a torn ACL, which may have played a role in his recent struggles. He underwent surgery to correct it in December and with an original recovery timetable of nine months, he should be back to full strength by Bellator 183. He'll have to hold off the streaking Patricky Freire, who's won three of his last four fights and is coming off a knockout win over Josh Thompson in February.