Rashad Evans and Dan henderson hit their marks Friday for the UFC 161 headliner. | Photo: TJ De Santis/Sherdog.com
His stock trending downward, onetime Ultimate Fighting Championship light heavyweight boss Rashad Evans must now confront one of the most compelling challenges of his career.
Evans checked in at 206 pounds for his UFC 161 headliner against former two-division Pride Fighting Championships titleholder Dan Henderson (204) on Saturday at the MTS Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. Heavyweight co-headliners Roy Nelson (260) and Stipe Miocic (243) also hit their intended marks at Friday’s official weigh-in.
A member of the Blackzilians, Evans enters the cage on his first two-fight losing streak. The 33-year-old Niagara Falls, N.Y., native last appeared at UFC 156 in February, when he lost a unanimous decision to Antonio Rogerio Nogueira at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. Evans holds high-profile wins against 2008 NCAA wrestling champion Phil Davis, “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 3 winner Michael Bisping and four former UFC champions: Chuck Liddell, Forrest Griffin, Quinton Jackson and Tito Ortiz. He has compiled a 12-3-1 mark inside the Octagon.
The distinguished Henderson resume is littered with accomplishment. A two-time Olympian, the 42-year-old Downey, Calif., native remains the only man to ever hold major MMA titles in two weight classes simultaneously, having done so during his heyday in Pride. Anchored at Team Quest, Henderson last fought at UFC 157 in February, when he came out on the wrong side of a split decision to Lyoto Machida at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif. The defeat halted his four-fight winning streak, which included victories over Russian icon Fedor Emelianenko and onetime UFC light heavyweight champion Mauricio Rua. In three different stints with the UFC, Henderson has amassed a 6-3 record.
UFC 161 “Evans vs. Henderson” -- which airs live on pay-per-view at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT -- will also feature a light heavyweight scrap pairing former Maximum Fighting Championship titleholder Ryan Jimmo (206) with Igor Pokrajac (206), a women’s bantamweight clash pitting Alexis Davis (134) against Rosi Sexton (135.5) and a heavyweight tilt matching Pat Barry (245) with Jackson’s Mixed Martial Arts export Shawn Jordan (248).
Two hours prior, the FX network will carry four preliminary matchups: Jake Shields (171) vs. Tyron Woodley (171), Sam Stout (156) vs. James Krause (155.5), Sean Pierson (170.5) vs. Kenny Robertson (170.5) and Roland Delorme (136) vs. Edwin Figueroa (135). The two remaining undercard bouts will stream to the UFC’s Facebook page at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT, as Mitch Clarke (155.5) faces John Maguire (155) and Yves Jabouin (136) tackles “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 14 semifinalist Dustin Pague (135.5).
UFC 161 “Evans vs. Henderson” Weigh-In Results:Rashad Evans (206) vs. Dan Henderson (204)
Roy Nelson (260) vs. Stipe Miocic (243)
Ryan Jimmo (206) vs. Igor Pokrajac (206)
Alexis Davis (134) vs. Rosi Sexton (135.5)
Pat Barry (245) vs. Shawn Jordan (248)
Jake Shields (171) vs. Tyron Woodley (171)
Sam Stout (156) vs. James Krause (155.5)
Sean Pierson (170.5) vs. Kenny Robertson (170.5)
Roland Delorme (136) vs. Edwin Figueroa (135)
Mitch Clarke (155.5) vs. John Maguire (155)
Yves Jabouin (136) vs. Dustin Pague (135.5)