After five fights in 15 months, WEC lightweight champion Benson Henderson’s next big move will be in front of the alter, following his impressive first-round submission victory over Donald Cerrone in their awaited rematch at WEC 48 “Aldo vs. Faber” in Sacramento, Calif.
“I'm getting married on August 20th,” Henderson told the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Beatdown Show” on Monday. “I'm going to take the time off until after I get married and then I'll get back in the cage.”
Henderson said he’s injury-free after Saturday’s bout, without even so much as a knuckle bruise. The Arizona fighter’s first encounter with Cerrone wasn’t as swift and easy, as the friends and one-time training partners worked in high gear for five rounds at WEC 43 in October 2009. Henderson earned a unanimous decision.
In Saturday’s match, Henderson quickly latched on the guillotine choke as Cerrone rose to his feet following a scramble. Henderson said the choke is a “dangerous weapon” for him.
“I'm 100% all for everyone else in the MMA world and the subculture of MMA believing that the guillotine is all I have and if they stay away from my guillotine then they're safe and good to go, if you believe that then that's awesome. You go ahead and believe that,” he said.
Henderson admitted that he’d been worried about Cerrone’s ground game in the first fight.
“We knew he had a really nasty triangle-armlock combination, so we wanted to stay out of that,” said Henderson. “We wanted to work on the crouch position, posture up, head high, he was raining down shots from above. This time I don't care what it took. I was going to run through a brick wall if I had to. I wanted to finish this fight. I was taking my chances.”
This time around, Henderson said his need to deliver critics a clear-cut finish fueled a different fight against the Greg Jackson product.
“I think the biggest difference was I had a chip on my shoulder this fight,” said Henderson. “A lot of fans, critics, people and what not -- it's fine they have their own opinion. I'm not going to try to change their opinion about what happened last fight, who won or whether it was a controversial decision or what not that I had been hearing about for a long time. With this fight, nothing against Donald, but I had a bit of a chip on my shoulder. Controversial huh? OK, let’s see this time. Let’s see how controversial it is this time. I had a bit of a chip on my shoulder and that was the big difference.
As for who may await Henderson when he gets back from his honeymoon, the defending champion had his own thoughts.
“Everybody who's above me in the top 10 list. Whatever lists there are out there, pick a random list, if they're above me on the list. I want to fight them,” said Henderson. “I've been doing this for three and a half years. I haven't even scratched the surface of how far I think I can go and how much further I think I can get. I want to be able to show people, ‘hey I'm pretty good at this.’ To be able to showcase those skills and see what I've been working on, I've got to fight those top-10 guys.”