Rafael dos Anjos Says No to Henderson, Wants TJ Grant in Singapore
Sorry, “Bendo”, Rafael dos Anjos (20-6 MMA, 9-4 UFC) has other fighters on his mind while swimming upstream in the UFC’s Lightweight division.
And why wouldn’t he? Recently, the well-stocked pool of contenders has seen some new faces make waves, ousting former mainstays in the process.
Dos Anjos’ most recent win against the once-indestructible Donald Cerrone is proof of that, after taking “The Cowboy” a full three rounds before beating him unanimously across the scorecards.
Boasting a five-fight win streak over such notables as Cerrone, Evan Dunham, Mark Bocek, Anthony Njokuani and a beautiful first-round submission of Kamal Shalorus, dos Anjos no longer wants to tiptoe his way to a championship bout.
Not an easy feat, considering the UFC lightweight had previously failed to build such an impressive win streak against the upper-echelon of the division.
Speaking with MMA Mania, the Brazilian native said about Ben Henderson’s desire to fight him, “If the UFC wants me to fight one more opponent first, then I prefer to face another contender like TJ Grant, who has also been winning many fights, and not Ben Henderson because he lost his last fight. But becoming the first Brazilian Lightweight champion is my dream. If I need to beat Ben Henderson to get my title shot, I am ready for that.”
Henderson, the former UFC Lightweight champion, was recently stopped in the first round by new champion Anthony “Showtime” Pettis at UFC 164 in Milwaukee. Prior to the event, “Smooth” had been on a tremendous, albeit tenuous, winning streak, defending his belt three times against increasingly difficult competition.
This, however, doesn’t make Rafael dos Anjos want to step into the Octagon with the former champ. But if it means he’ll get his opportunity at UFC gold, he’s ready to step in with anyone who’s going to get him there. The only request is that he gets to fight in Singapore at the upcoming Ultimate Fighting Championship show in January.
“I am hoping that the UFC will allow me to fight in Singapore, because Evolve MMA is my team and I train there many times…and a lot of people there will buy tickets and come to support me,” said the hopeful contender, “If TJ Grant is fit by January, I think that would be a very good fight for the fans in Singapore.”
The championship hopeful will no doubt be ready if tapped for the event. Now UFC fans will be waiting along with him for word from the brass on which opponent he’ll face next.