UFC 144: 7 Reasons Benson Henderson Will Beat Frankie Edgar
The event marks the promotion's first foray to Japan in over ten years where the famed Saitama Super Arena will play host to the historic event.
Despite Edgar's more than noteworthy performances as of late, Henderson has been equally impressive inside the Octagon and holds skills that could decidedly sway the 155-pound affair in his favor.
If there is anyone that can keep up with the cardio machine that is Edgar—it would be Henderson.
In his most recent outings inside the Octagon, part of Henderson's most recent success can be attributed to his non-stop, relentless attack that has wilted opponents like Mark Bocek and Jim Miller.
Though Edgar can keep up, Henderson's go-go-go style will make for an interesting turn of events.
At the end of those punches Henderson wields some decent power.
Whether it's on the feet or on the ground, the lightweight contender can end the fight at any given moment. In his battle with Shane Roller, Henderson weathered an early storm and came back with the TKO finish in the waning moments of the round.
In his most recent outing with then perennial contender Clay Guida, Henderson dropped the durable fighter several times in the first round, once again proving that the Arizona fighter can end the bout at any given moment.
Though his wrestling has been prominently on display as of late, one of his biggest keys to victory has been his underrated jiu-jitsu skills.
"Bendo," as Henderson's most affectionately known by the hardcore fans, has displayed an innate ability to get out of the most deftly applied submissions—case in point his first battle with Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone, who cinched up triangles, armbars and omaplatas galore, none of which were able to stifle Henderson.
In their second outing, the 28-year-old was then able to cinch a submission of his own, slapping on his tight, patented guillotine choke that yielded the tapout in less than two minutes of action.
To date, Henderson is the only man to finish the wily Cerrone.
All of his outings in the UFC have been relegated to three-round battles.
However, in his stint with the WEC, Henderson once reigned as the organization's champion where he was pitted in four five-round tilts, twice going the distance in battles with Cerrone and Anthony Pettis.
Henderson has been through the trenches before and he won't be surprised by anything Edgar has to offer in the late rounds.
Henderson's base was built on his obvious wrestling prowess, though he has since become more than comfortable standing and trading with formidable opposition.
The MMA Labs product is unorthodox in his approach, throwing looping hooks and a bevy of superman punches, but he's proven effective.
Knees, elbows and kicks are all a part of the arsenal that encompass the full gamut of skills that Henderson wields on his feet.
The biggest stain in Henderson's career to date would have to be the Arizona fighter falling victim to the highlight-reel kick delivered by rival Anthony Pettis that will follow Pettis for the rest of his life.
In his final outing with the WEC, Henderson took on "Showtime" for the 155-pound title and dropped a close decision to the Duke Roufus protege where in the fifth and final round Pettis sealed the bout with a cage-walk kick that sent Henderson crashing to the canvas.
Since then, Henderson, a Colorado native, has been able to rattle off a three-fight win streak inside the Octagon over notable opposition, becoming the top contender to the UFC title after a devastating loss.
Since exiting the WEC, Henderson has become a man on a mission.
In just his second bout with the UFC, Henderson took on then top contender Jim Miller, who had recorded an impressive seven-fight win streak in the Octagon.
Henderson dominated the lightweight powerhouse en route to a decision victory. He later followed up the emphatic win with a "Fight of the Night" worthy performance against Clay Guida and earned another clear-cut decision win over another notable opponent.
The jiu-jitsu brown belt has been breathing a new air of confidence since entering the UFC, which has now anchored him all the way to the top of the division.
He will look to make the most of his impressive run when he takes on champion Frankie Edgar in less than two months time.