Rafael dos Anjos sent a message out tonight to the rest of the lightweight division, stopping former champion Benson Henderson in one round in the main event at UFC Fight Night 49 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Henderson, of Arizona, was about a three-to-one favorite over the Brazilian.
The two opened with some high level striking, both looking to establish leg kicks and their (southpaw) jabs. But it was, somewhat surprisingly, dos Anjos who took the advantage with some nice punching combo and a solid flying knee. A big left hook from dos Anjos dropped Henderson to the mat, and referee John McCarthy called a halt to the bout at 2:31 of the round.
Henderson was visibly frustrated at the stoppage– and in his defense, he was still moving about looking to escape. But, he was shaken for sure — and as always, it’s better to see about stopped too early than too late.
Rafael dos Anjos defeats Benson Henderson by TKO (punches) at 2:31 of round one.