Dan Henderson firmly believes he would have smashed UFC heavyweight champion Jon Jones had their scheduled light heavyweight title fight at UFC 151 gone as planned.
Henderson was set to face then-light heavyweight champion Jones in the main event of UFC 151 in September 2012. However, the former two-division PRIDE champion pulled out just nine days before the fight due to a torn MCL. Chael Sonnen offered to replace him on short notice, but Jones refused, leading to the cancellation of the entire event.
In a recent interview with ESPN, Henderson claimed that had the fight gone as scheduled, he would have battered Jones.
“That’s the one fight I wish I would’ve had that I never had,” Henderson said. “I was the probably the most prepared for that fight that I’ve ever been. Just kind of blew my knee out a little bit, before the fight. It happened about three weeks before the fight, when I hurt my knee. Still had the idea that I was going to be able to fight, it would’ve been tough but I would’ve gotten it done. My team kind of talked some sense into me, it wasn’t a smart idea.
“That’s the only fight I’ve pulled out of in a 20-year career. So I was kind of bummed… I was 100% certain I was going to beat the f*** out of him, so. I absolutely would have beat him up, in my mind I was so prepared. Not just physically prepared, but tactically. My gameplan, everything, being used to longer guys. I just was so ready, and I think all my training partners would attest to that.”
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