Dan Henderson wanted to send a message to everyone that thought he was done after his loss to Jake Shields in April. He answered in emphatic fashion with a first round drubbing of Renato “Babalu” Sobral in Strikeforce.
From the opening bell, Henderson looked much different than he did during his last fight where he had a tremendously tough weight cut to get down to 185lbs. Light on his feet, Henderson had to deal with some good kicks from Sobral early as the Brazilian tried to stay outside of his opponent’s power.
The plan only worked for so long until Henderson clipped Sobral with a quick left that rattled him, and moments later the fight hit the mat. A few punches on the ground, and Henderson found his inner Fedor Emelianenko emerge, standing up from within the guard and reigning down monstrous shots from above.
A right hand shook Babalu’s jaw, and Henderson stayed on the attack with a few more doses of the same medicine. A few moments later Sobral was unconscious as the referee rushed in for the save.
Henderson’s reaction to the knockout was very simple.
Answering all of his naysayers with a vicious knockout of a very tough opponent, Dan Henderson isn’t going anywhere and he has plenty of plans for Strikeforce in the future.
“A lot of people thought I was done in this sport,” Henderson commented. “I’m a long way from done.”
While Henderson has spent time at both middleweight and light heavyweight during his career, it would appear with his performance on Saturday night that 205lbs would be the ideal place for the Team Quest fighter to stay in Strikeforce.
He’s still willing to do the bidding of the promotion, but Henderson sounds like a light heavyweight fighter looking towards his next challenge.
“Whatever Scott Coker and Strikeforce comes up with, I’m down for. Obviously I think I prefer 205, but I’m fine at 185 if that’s what he would rather have me at. There’s plenty of good opponents at 205, so I don’t see why I shouldn’t be there,” Henderson said.
Prior to the fight, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker stated that the winner of Saturday night’s main event bout would be getting the next shot at Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante for the light heavyweight title. If those plans stay the same look for Henderson to get that shot in 2011.