UFC Brazil: Vitor Belfort vs Dan Henderson analysis

Hendo

Bruce Fedyck – USA TODAY Sports

A rematch between Dan Henderson and Vitor Belfort will take place on November 9 in Brazil. The two competitors met up at Pride 32 in October 2006, where Hendo won a unanimous decision. Seven years later, will it be the same result? Let’s look into this fight in detail.

STRIKING

There is definitely a possibility that this fight ends early in the battle. Both Hendo and Vitor are fighters who don’t waste time getting started, and can end a fight easily in the first round with their knockout power. If it’s a KO for Henderson, it’s going to be a big right hand.

If it’s a KO for Vitor, it could be either fist, a flurry of punches, or his new weapon: his kicks. He has shown some unbelievable kicks with in his knockouts over Michael Bisping and Luke Rockhold. Vitor has more weapons on the feet, but Hendo’s big one can even that up.

Edge: Even

WRESTLING

Henderson is the more decorated wrestler, but Vitor has some good takedowns of his own. Belfort may be able to surprise Hendo with a takedown, but if anyone does score with wrestling in this fight, it’s more likely to be Henderson. I think both these two love duking it out despite the fact that they’re very well rounded. So wrestling will come into play at some point, but it will be mostly standup.

Edge: Hendo

BJJ

Henderson is not interested in using BJJ to win. His style is simple: go forward and punch guys out. Vitor can use his BJJ from time to time and almost pulled off one of the greatest upsets in UFC history by scoring an armbar in the first round against Jon Jones. The resiliency and toughness of Jones allowed him to power out of the lock, but it was a real strong reminder of how good Vitor is on the ground.

Edge: Vitor

CARDIO

Henderson has petered out in some of his fights, and that could possibly be a problem if this fight goes into the later stages. Many might think this doesn’t go past round one based on how dynamic and powerful these two fighters are, but the longer it lasts, the more it favors Belfort.

Edge: Vitor

OUTCOME

An early KO or a decision is the most likely outcome here. Either fighter can end the fight by knockout early, and a decision could really go either way. I think both fighters’ chins are solid enough to not get knocked out in this fight, so it’s going the distance. In that case, I tend to favor the fighter who has shown better cardio in their last few outings, so I’m leaning towards Vitor in this classic rematch.

He will gain strength from hometown fans and pull off a decision.

Winner: Vitor, split-decision victory


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