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Dan Henderson: “He Tried to Rocky Balboa Me”

Written by Tom Ngo
November 20th, 2011
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Dan Henderson (Pictured) and Mauricio “Shogun” Rua were rushed to the hospital following their instant classic at UFC 139. Although they weren’t able to attend the post-fight press conference, Henderson did manage to answer a few questions prior to riding off in an ambulance.

Despite bloodying and battering the Brazilian in the opening rounds, Henderson wasn’t able to finish Shogun off. However, Hendo wasn’t too surprised because he had seen a resilient effort like that in the movies before.

“I tried to finish him a couple of times, he tired me out a little bit,” Henderson shared. “He tried to Rocky Balboa me early on. He wore me out with his head.

“As soon as he got that takedown in the 5thRound, I knew I had the fight won, I just didn’t want to give him a 10-8 round.”

While most fans inside the HP Pavilion in San Jose, California didn’t know what to expect to hear when the scores were being read, Henderson believed he had done more than enough during their 25-minute affair to secure the win.

“I would have been very, very disappointed in the judges,” Henderson said if he wouldn’t have been awarded with the decision. “Honestly, I thought I won the first four rounds – three easily, with a possible 10-8 round. I knew I had the fight won heading into the 5thRound.”

Sure enough, Henderson managed to take home a unanimous decision victory. When asked if his next fight should be against light heavyweight champ Jon Jones or Lyoto Machida, who battle next month at UFC 140, Henderson flatly stated, “Absolutely.”

At the post-fight presser, UFC president Dana White reiterated that Rashad Evans is next in line for a shot at the 205-pound crown.

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