Freelance: Henderson to Retire following Bisping Rematch

The news is out now that if 45-year-old UFC veteran Dan “Hendo” Henderson captures the UFC Middleweight championship from Michael “The Count” Bisping at UFC 204 in October, the title win will be more of an example of symbolism more than anything else. Henderson made his impending ride off into the proverbial sunset official during a guest appearance on the Talking Brawls podcast.

“That is my plan, win or lose I’m ready mentally to retire. My body could still probably go another two, three years more. I’ve put it through enough. I’m ready to take it a little bit easier, but still be involved in MMA doing something a little bit different than fighting” Henderson said.

The end of the road has been approaching for some time. While Henderson is a former UFC champion, it was all the way back at UFC 17 during the 90s tournament era of the promotion. In the modern setting (exclusively the last three years) he holds a 3-6 record that saw him suffer two knockouts, one technical knockout, one technical submission, and a pair of split decision losses.

The bout with Bisping will be a rematch from UFC 100 and put the cap on a heated rivalry between the two that originated during their stints as coaches on The Ultimate Fighter: United States vs. United Kingdom in 2009. The incumbent champion explained his motivations when appearing on Fox Sports 1 roughly two weeks ago. His comments were obtained from Fox’s Damon Martin.

“Why did I choose a rematch for this fight? I don’t get it, I don’t understand. Why would I want to avenge the most devastating knockout in UFC history? I just don’t know why I would do that.” “Chris Weidman, Luke Rockhold, Jacare — they’re going nowhere,” Bisping said. “Dan Henderson is on the verge of retiring.”

“He said one more fight so Dan Henderson put your big-boy pants on, fly over to Manchester and I’ll see you in the Octagon, my friend.”

When the thrower of the “H-Bomb” does make his exit in the coming months, he will exit as a former Pride FC champion in two separate weight classes (Welterweight in 2005 and Middleweight in 2007.) While that accomplishment was outside of the UFC, the only men to do the same with the organization are Hall of Fame members Randy “The Natural” Couture and “The Prodigy” BJ Penn.

“I’ve been fighting for so long, before my kids were born. It’ll be nice to be able to plan vacations further in advance from now on and spend more times with my kids” Henderson went on to say.

UFC 204: Bisping vs. Henderson 2 has officially been set for October 8 and while take place Manchester, England, If the American wins, he will leave the UFC with 33-14 overall MMA record. He currently has 16 wins by KO on his résumé.