MMA Fight of the Week: Dan Henderson vs. Rafael Cavalcante for the Strikeforce Light Heavyweight title

Dan Henderson was set to take on Jon Jones for the UFC Light Heavyweight title at UFC 151, but had to pull out due to injury. The UFC wanted Jones to face Chael Sonnen on eight days notice, however the champion declined the fight which resulted in the cancellation of the event..

Regardless of who is to blame, Henderson now has to wait until he is fully recovered from his injury to get back into the octagon.

Although he will have to live without UFC gold for a little while longer, there was a time when he was fighting for the Strikeforce Light Heavyweight championship. Henderson was already a UFC tournament champion, RINGS tournament champion and held championships in two different weight classes when faced Rafael Cavalcante for the title on March 5, 2011.

The first round of the fight began with the crowd chanting Henderson’s name as he received a leg kick from Cavalcante. Cavalcante knocks Henderson down with an overhand right, but Hendo recovers and takes down the champion, keeping control until the end of the round.

The second round consisted of the champion and challenger trading shots and defending against each other’s takedowns. Henderson manages to get Cavalcante on the mat in the final minute of the round.

It wouldn’t be until the third round a straight right at the champion to get him in the clinch. Cavalcante escapes the clinch, only to get rocked by Henderson, who lands another right to knock the champion to the mat.

After some ground and pound, the referee stops the fight, declaring Henderson the new Strikeforce Light Heavyweight champion.

Henderon, who was 40-years-old at the time, would make history by becoming the oldest fighter to win a championship in Strikeforce.

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