The UFC 161 card this weekend features a main event in the Light heavyweight division of Dan Henderson vs Rashad Evans. The winner of the match would likely be a win away from a title shot, as both men have the resumes for a title shot but are both coming off losses and have some work to do. The fight is a complete pick em fight at the books, at this point, so it so going to come down to who wants and needs this fight more.
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Evans was once one of the UFC’s hottest prospects, but in his last few outings he has looked like he was just going through the motions and has had uninspired performances. He has notably dropped two fights in a row for the first time in his career, and everyone knows three losses in a row in the UFC is bad for one’s career.
Henderson’s legacy is already written. If you weren’t around for his MMA debut against Crezio de Souza in 1997 you missed out on the posters calling Crezio ‘Crazy Ho’. The main thing is that over time, Henderson has changed as a fighter, using his wrestling to avoid the takedown and looking for his one big punch. Look for more of the same against Evans, as Henderson is very likely to lose rounds while he is looking to land his shot.
Evans will need to find his old fire again to win this fight. If he does that, he is the faster, more elusive of the two and he packs a big punch of his own, and he is capable of winning the fight if it goes tot he cards because he is capable of more activity.
Waiting to see the weigh ins might be critical for this match. It would be important to see Evan’s body language before the fight. He has been talking tin the media about getting his old arrogance back and fighting with swagger. That will show at the weigh ins, and if I see the same Rashad as the last few times, and that is a fighter going through the motions, he is going to lose. But a motivated Rashad Evans who is confident like he used to be, he cant lose.