Dan Henderson is back to his winning ways for the first time since 2011.
Shogun Rua showed a more methodical approach in this fight than their last meeting in the octagon. Rua utilized leg kicks and jabs to keep Dan Henderson a safe distance away. While Henderson landed some decent leg kicks of his own, they were used to set up bigger punches. Rua started to take control of the fight after he dropped Henderson once in the first and again in the second. Rua was not able to finish Henderson, but it was clear he was in control of the fight.
Shogun Rua was forcing Dan Henderson to fight the way he wanted to and Henderson was suffering from it. If rounds one and two were any indication of how the fight would end, Henderson was going to have a rough time reaching the fifth round.
Shogun Rua continued to dictate the pace of the fight with his leg kicks and jabs while Dan Henderson patiently waited for a hole to open up so he could land a lethal knockout blow. That moment came a minute into the third round.
After separating from the clinch, Dan Henderson landed the right hook he was looking for on the nose of Rua. Rua tumbled backwards and tried to recover but his feet weren’t under him. Henderson rushed forward and blasted him with another punch to the nose. Rua put his head on the mat and turtled up while Henderson continued to punish him. Henderson finally looked up at the referee which is when Herb Dean finally stepped in and put a stop to the action.
As soon as Henderson walked away, Rua postured up and fell to his back in agonizing pain. From the visual, it’s obvious Shogun Rua suffered a broken nose.
Dan Henderson def. Shogun Rua by way of TKO (Punches) 1:31 of Round 3