UFC Lightweight Title Changes Hands at UFC 164!

Josh_BarnettBenson Henderson entered his UFC 164 re-match against Anthony Pettis with revenge on his mind. Henderson had gone 7-0 in the UFC and was the Lightweight Champion whose last loss came in the WEC cage to Pettis back in December of 2010. Henderson is now 0-2 against Pettis, as ‘Showtime’ locked up an armbar in the first round to earn the verbal submission. With an 0-2 record against his nemesis, Henderson is not assured of an immediate rematch. What could be next for both men? Pettis is already calling out Jose Aldo for what would be an inter-divisional super-fight with the UFC Featherweight titlist. Things such as what title would be on the line and at what weight the fight would occur would need to be ironed out. Pettis was a replacement against Henderson, as the match originally belonged to TJ Grant, who was coming off a wipe out win over Gray Maynard. Unfortunately for Grant, who has won five in a row since dropping to Lightweight and does deserve a shot, the injury dropped him from the public awareness somewhat, and he was still somewhat under the radar with the mainstream audience. Look for Aldo versus Pettis to come together next, as that match will sell, while Pettis versus TJ Grant won’t. In the Heavyweight division, Josh Barnett came right after Frank Mir and took him out within the first two minutes of the fight. Though Mir protested against a quick stoppage, the win showed a focused Barnett who is probably already worthy of a top 5 slot in the rankings. He was manhandled by Daniel Cormier, but with Cormier’s relation with Heavyweight Champion Cain Velasquez, it will be either Cormier or Barnett in the next heavyweight title fight, with Barnett facing VelasquezMdash;should he defend his belt successfully against Junior Dos Santos&Mdash;and Cormier meeting Dos Santos if he should win the title next month. This could be a Super Bowl weekend type main event, as the UFC usually reserves a big card for Vegas in February. Another contender on the card, Chad Mendes firmly established himself as the number one contender at Featherweight. Mendes took out Clay Guida with strikes, as he showed improved stand up footwork and striking as well as established his dominance as a wrestler over a bigger fighter with a similar skill set. The problem for Mendes is that he didn’t show much in his first bout with Aldo, making a rematch much less interesting than the proposed Aldo super-fight with Anthony Pettis. Should Aldo go up a weight class, all roads to the Featherweight title would go through Chad Mendes. The division is loaded with talent as filling a vacant Featherweight title with matches like Mendes vs Ricardo Lamas, Cub Swanson or Frankie Edgard are all legitimate options. There is another intriguing option, though it may not be on the company’s radar. If Aldo stays in the weight class, his next match will be Mendes. If Aldo goes up in weight class, his teammate Renan Barao, who has been dominating at Bantamweight and could conceivably move up to Featherweight. This would free up the 135 lb title for Mendes teammate Urijah Faber, who would almost certainly be in hunt for a vacant title. This would leave Nova Uniao and Team Alpha Male, two of the elite teams in the world, with training camps for two guys in title fights – and that type of pressure and hype is what the UFC loves.

Written by Miguel

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