Evans vs. Henderson: Why Suga Has Ultimate Edge at UFC 161

Pete SchauerCorrespondent IJune 13, 2013

Feb 2, 2013; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Rashad Evans (right) and Rogerio Nogueira (left) during UFC 156 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The main event of UFC 161 will feature Rashad Evans vs. Dan Henderson, and if all goes according to plan, Suga will improve his record to 18-3-1.

Despite losing back-to-back fights for the first time in his career, the 33-year-old Evans is poised for a big victory on Saturday because he has more to lose than Henderson does.

Evans lost a five-round unanimous decision match against the champ Jon Jones on Apr. 21, 2012 but followed it up with a surprising loss to Brazilian Antonio Rogerio Nogueira in three rounds on Feb. 2, 2013.

If Evans loses three consecutive fights, it's practically a death sentence for the future of his career, as he'd no longer be considered a championship fighter in the UFC realm.

Also giving Evans the ultimate edge against Henderson is his opponent's age.

Henderson is 42 years old, and while he's in impeccable shape for his age, he's also coming off a loss and hasn't faced a quality opponent like Evans in quite some time.

Hendo dropped his most recent fight to Lyoto Machida—a three-round split decision—on Feb. 23 and will now face an opponent who boasts better skills than he does.

Both men excel in the wrestling department, but Evans will have the advantage given his quickness and youth—well, youth in comparison to Henderson.

As we've seen in some of Henderson's most recent fights, his takedown defense isn't what it used to be, which is where Evans can take advantage. If Suga utilizes his speed and wrestling moves to his advantage, he'll have the upper hand over his opponent.

According to UFC Tonight, Evans is ready to put on a show for the fans:

There's a good possibility that this fight goes the distance and comes down to a split decision from the judges, as both opponents are nearing the end of their careers, but ultimately Evans has the advantage because of his quickness and wrestling skills.

Having fought Jon Jones recently, Evans has been battle tested and has faced the stiffer competition of late, giving him more experience and the ultimate edge over Henderson at UFC 161.


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