UFC on Fox 5 Play-by-Play: Benson Henderson vs. Nate Diaz

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Benson Henderson vs. Nate Diaz

Round 1: Henderson comes out with low kicks, but Diaz quickly clinches up and presses him to the cage. The champ reverses as they trade knees and Diaz peppers Henderson with short punches to the head. They wrestle for position, each man trying to throw the other, all the while exchanging knees, before they separate and Diaz lands a solid elbow on the break. Henderson then shoots and scores the takedown, Diaz gets up, and Henderson hip tosses him to the mat. Henderson drops some big bombs on Diaz, who eventually escapes to his feet. Henderson presses him to the cage and lands some heavy knees to the thigh. They come off the fence and Henderson sweeps out Diaz’s leg, causing him to hit the mat briefly. Henderson lands a superman left-right combination, but they immediately clinch and end the round on the fence. MMAWeekly.com scores round one 10-9 for Henderson

Round 2: They quickly clinch and Henderson throws Diaz to the mat, hammering him with ground and pound before they return to their feet, all inside the first minute. Henderson presses Diaz to the cage and works the knees to the thighs. They come off the fence and start trading, but Henderson is doing a very good job being an elusive target for Diaz’s punching attack. Henderson jabs at Diaz’s knee, yes, his knee, and then rocks him with a hard left hand to the face. He rushes in, forcing Diaz to the mat, and pummels him, but Diaz somehow regains his feet and Henderson puts him on the fence, shoulder punching his face. Diaz finally scores a throw, but they get to their feet and Henderson immediately starts attacking, going high with a kick and then low again, trying to sweep Diaz’s leg, but the round comes to an end. MMAWeekly.com scores round two 10-9 for Henderson

Round 3: Henderson again goes back to punching the knee and launching the side kick. Daiz’s lead leg starting to show the cumulative damage. They hit the mat, Henderson lands some hard punches, but they return to their feet. They start trading, but Henderson again puts Diaz on the mat, drops down into his full guard and starts dropping elbows and punches. He stands up in Diaz’s guard and Diaz does a good job driving his kicks into Henderson’s legs. Henderson goes back down and Diaz attacks with a leg lock and then toe-hold, but Henderson goes for a heel hook. They scramble, Henderson eventually winding up back in Diaz’s guard. Diaz again attacks the leg, but can’t find a lock. Henderson is out and they return to their feet. Henderson drops Diaz with a huge right hand, follows him down and pummels him, but Diaz  fights on like nothing happened, attacking Henderson’s leg again. Henderson escapes and drops an elbow to the body, stands up and then drops an axe kick on Diaz’s body just before the horn sounds. MMAWeekly.com scores round three 10-9 for Henderson

Round 4: Diaz’s face is battered and bruised, but he’s showing no signs of backing down, even with a limp in his lead leg. Henderson ties him up and tosses him to the mat. He takes Diaz’s back, but can’t get his hooks in. Diaz escapes to his feet, but Henderson takes him down again, Diaz on all fours, Henderson controlling from his back, but on his feet, punching all the while. They return to their feet, Diaz taking Henderson down, but Henderson is in the controlling position when they hit the mat, moving Diaz around, outwrestling the challenger. Henderson stands in Diaz’s guard dropping some big punches to the midsection, then drops down into half guard, continuing to work his ground and pound attack, Diaz trying to get a Kimura, but losing it. Henderson immediately drops a hammerfist and punches away from head to body. A minute left in the round and Henderson is standing, dropping calculated bombs on Diaz, who can seemingly do little to stop him. Diaz returns to his feet for the final 10 seconds, but can do little to save the round. MMAWeekly.com scores round four 10-9 for Henderson

Round 5: Henderson quickly clinches Diaz , they trade positions and Henderson scoops Diaz up and plants him on the mat. Henderson stands over Diaz and starts dropping down punches and elbows. Diaz scrambles out and to his feet, but Henderson has him pinned on the fence. Diaz grabs a Kimura hold, but Henderson escapes and continues his assault, body locking Diaz and driving knees into his legs. Diaz hip tosses Henderson, but Henderson is quickly out and on top, dropping huge right hands on Diaz before they once again return to their feet. Henderson lands some hard shots to the body, they separate and Diaz starts mugging, trying to goad Henderson into making a mistake, but the champ has none of it, finishing out a dominating performance. MMAWeekly.com scores round five 10-9 and the fight 50-45 for Henderson

Benson Henderson def. Nate Diaz by Unanimous Decision (50-43, 50-45, 50-45), R5

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