Fedor vs Dan Henderson – covered by David Gessner

Fedor Emelianenko vs. Dan Henderson (220 pound catchweight fight)

Round One: Both fighters came out throwing early with wild hooks and uppercuts. Hendo busted open Fedor’s right eye within the opening :40. Hendo clinched Fedor up against the cage and began throwing knees to the legs and body of Fedor. With 2:00 left, Hendo released the clinch and just missed with a lethal left hook.

At 4:01, Fedor rocked and dropped Hendo with a flurry of punches. Fedor dropped to the ground and began throwing bombs with his right hand to the head of the grounded Hendo. Out of nowhere, Hendo scrambled, took Fedor’s back, and knocked him out cold with a left uppercut. Hendo continued to land unanswered punch, after unanswered punch before referee Herb Dean jumped in and ended the fight.

Official Decision: Dan Henderson defeated Fedor Emelianenko via TKO at 4:12 of the first round

Gessner’s Glance: HOLY SHIT!!! That was without a doubt one of the most insane finishes I have ever seen. I give the finish of this fight the edge over Pat Berry vs. Cheick Kongo at UFC ‘s last show on Versus this past June. Great win and great finish to the show.

Overall Show Thoughts: Slow start to the show with the opening three fights, but was saved by the co and main event. Saffiedine clearly dominated Smith for fifteen minutes. Woodley executed his game plan and kept Daley on his back for the final eighty percent of the fight. Kennedy and Lawler was closer than the opening two fights but was clearly in control for the first two rounds and was never in danger of losing in the third round.

Coenen versus Tate was a very closely contested fight. Tate had the edge in takedowns and ground positioning, while Coenen out struck her in both standup and on the ground. However, I beautifully timed submission won Tate the championship, submitting Coenen for the first time in her career.

Henderson versus Fedor was absolute fireworks from the get go. The opening and final minutes of the fight was a display of two fighters going balls to the wall and leaving nothing in the tank. Fedor appeared to be on the verge of winning before Hendo came out of nowhere with the escape followed by huge left hand that turned out Fedor’s lights.

The main event left two big looming questions. One, what is next for Fedor and will this be the last time he steps foot inside the cage? In his post fight interview, he said that it is “God’s will” on whether or not he will have another fight coming off his three fight losing streak. Fabricio Werdum locked in a lucky submission in Fedor’s first fight in Strikeforce. Antonio Silva dominated Fedor in the second round this past February. Tonight, Fedor looked the best he has since coming to America. He was on the verge on finishing Henderson, but Hendo was able to somehow escape and land knockout blows. I think he should have one more fight.

The other question is, where does Dan Henderson go from here? This was the final fight on his Strikeforce contract. Will he resign with Strikeforce and defend his Light Heavyweight Championship that he won in March, or will he be brought back into the UFC? If he’s looking to, I don’t want to say “pad his legacy,” but face a lower caliber of competition at 205 pounds, then he should resign and stay with Strikeforce. If he wants a bigger payday and a higher level of opponents then he should be brought into the UFC on a three fight deal. Have him fight two top ten light heavyweights, and if he defeats both opponents, challenge Jon “Bones” Jones for the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship.

Congrats Dan Henderson for beating Fedor