Dan Henderson has earned many accolades during his two-decade mixed martial arts career. However, the one thing that has proven to be elusive for the 45-year-old is capturing UFC gold. After holding off retirement with a remarkable come-from-behind knockout of Hector Lombard at UFC 199, Henderson has his eyes set on one last fight against the current UFC middleweight champion, Michael Bisping.
Dan Henderson wants his final fight to be against UFC middleweight champ Michael Bisping. (Getty Images)In the aftermath of his knockout, which happened to be on the same card that Bispingcaptured the middleweight title from Luke Rockhold, there has been tremendous support from MMA fans to see a rematch of the UFC 100 showdown where Bisping was knocked out cold by Henderson in the second round.
Although he’s currently ranked No. 13 among middleweights, the fight does carry a lot of intrigue and it’s something that Henderson would like to have the opportunity to do before riding off into the sunset.
“[Fighting Bisping] is definitely something that I would do,” Henderson said on the MMA Discussion podcast. “But it would definitely be my last fight for sure. Win or lose. I’m obviously confident that I would win, but win or lose I would make that my retirement fight.”
Many thought that Henderson’s knockout of Lombard would be the perfect way to end his illustrious MMA career that saw him become the first fighter in any major MMA promotion to hold world titles in two different weight classes. But capturing UFC gold against a foe who he once had a tepid rivalry with would certainly be the cherry on top.
“I think [a fight with Bisping] makes the most sense,” Bisping continued. “Him winning that title has given me the [motivation] to want to fight him again. I didn’t have any reason [before], I wouldn’t be able to knock him out any better or more exciting than I did the first time. Now with him having the belt, that gives me a reason, and gives him reason as far as being able to get some redemption.”
Bisping has also expressed interest in facing Henderson again to get his revenge after being on the wrong side of one of the most brutal knockouts in UFC history. Many of the middleweights who rank higher than Henderson scoffed at the prospect of being leapfrogged by a 45-year-old man who has gone 2-3 in his last five fights, but the rest of the MMA universe appears to support this potential showdown.
Bisping has proposed that the fight happen in the United Kingdom, but Henderson has other plans for where he’d like his final fight to be.
“If I got the opportunity to [fight Bisping] we could do it anywhere. Obviously closer to home would be better – even the first time in Madison Square Garden would be neat – but it doesn’t matter to me.”