UFC 157: Rousey vs. Carmouche on Saturday at The Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif. features several intriguing bouts, and one of them is the fight between former UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida and Pride two-division champ Dan Henderson.
The most interesting part of the fight is the contrast of style between these two competitors. Machida likes to utilize his karate skills, going in and out to hit his opponent without earning damage, while Henderson likes to pick his shot and puts enough power on them to score a knockdown.
Still, many believe that Machida will pick up the win here and that he has Henderson’s number. This can attributed to Machida’s technique and the number of weapons he can use come fight night.
Machida is well known for his style of keeping away from his opponent to avoid being hit or being taken down. He should utilize this in order to avoid Henderson’s powerful right hand, which is known for knocking out solid opponents.
If Machida can land his shot against Henderson and get out of harm’s way quickly, he can neutralize his opponent’s strengths.
The Dragon is also known for throwing powerful kicks in his fights. He can use it to his advantage for the simple reason that Henderson is not known for inducing takedowns in his approach.
If he can land several clean kicks on his opponent, Machida can pick Henderson apart and diminish his cardio.
Machida can fully utilize his jiu-jitsu in the later rounds, when Henderson is likely to get tired.
Henderson has been submitted in the past, and it’s interesting that that his three loses have by submission at the hands of Machida’s training partners at Black House: Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, Antonio Rogerio Nogueira and Anderson Silva.
Like I said in the previous slide, there’s a possibility that Henderson might fade a bit in the later rounds, as was evident in his last fight against Shogun Rua. Machida can exploit this by maximizing the space of the Octagon and moving around to make Henderson chase him and lose cardio later in the fight.