MMA legend Dan Henderson has a chance to retire at the top of the game as he is set to face UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping for the belt at UFC 204 on October 8.
Prior to his last bout where “Hendo” knocked out Hector Lombard in the second round of their fight, Henderson had already begun talks of retirement. The UFC 199 bout against Lombard was the last fight to fulfill his UFC contract.
“I’m definitely capable of keeping on and still competing at a high level, but I’m almost ready to retire, and depending on how things play out after this fight with negotiations, yeah, it could be my last,” Henderson told MMA Junkie. “Or maybe I’ll still fight. I don’t know yet. I’m at that point where I’m about ready, but definitely, I know in my heart I’m still capable of doing it and if I do decide to keep going on I’ll make sure I do it well.”
Henderson’s tune has changed a bit since then, with him saying that he was ready to retire after the rematch with Bisping “win or lose” and then later telling Champions that upping his pay could possibly keep him around for more.
With retirement still on Henderson’s mind, “Hendo” was recently asked by MMA Fighting on which opponent he feels was “the one that got away.”
“There’s only one that really, Jon Jones, you know?” Henderson told MMA Fighting of the one opponent he feels he always needed to test himself against. “I trained to fight him, got ready to fight him, got hurt and I didn’t get a chance to test myself against him, you know? That would have been a fun moment to see how I do against Jon Jones. He’s since then done even better. He’s screwed up a little, too, but he’s still arguably the best pound for pound guy out there.”
With having fought in the UFC’s light heavyweight and middleweight divisions, “Hendo” says that fighting at light heavyweight has gotten harder as he has gotten older.
“Over the years, it’s gotten harder to keep my body in the shape I need to,” Henderson said. “That’s why I dropped back down to middleweight, because it’s harder to go against the heavier guys. Having DC’s fat ass on top of me really didn’t help. When he was on top of me, I decided to go down to another weight class.”
Time will tell what comes next for Dan Henderson’s professional fighting career. Luckily, for fans of “Hendo,” that time is coming in less than two weeks.