Ben Henderson has mentioned in the past that he’s considered moving up to the UFC’s welterweight division, and he’ll finally get the chance to test the waters at 170lbs with a short notice fight against Brandon Thatch in the main event of UFC Fight Night 60 next weekend.
Exactly how did the fight come about though? Henderson tells Bleacher Report that he had been pushing UFC matchmaker Joe Silva for some time to get him a fight in the division regardless of how short the notice was, and he eventually took him up on the offer.
“I was already bugging Joe about me taking a short notice fight,” Henderson said. “I told him 155 would be hard for me to make on short notice. Physically I could do it, but I wouldn’t perform well making that weight on one or two weeks’ notice. But if you have a short notice fight for me at 170, I’m all for it. We’ve been thinking about dabbling at 170 for awhile and seeing how it works out for us, and it just so happened that they needed it. Joe Silva text me last Saturday a few fights before Anderson Silva vs. Nick Diaz fight, and he wanted to know how serious I was about taking a short notice fight at 170. I told him I’ll take whatever he was offering.
“I’m not one of those guys who just talks the talk,” he added. “I actually back it up. Joe offered up Denver, Colorado, against Brandon Thatch in a main event. I said, ‘Cool. Let’s do it.'”
Henderson is looking to pull himself out of a two-fight losing streak, but still remains at No.5 on the lightweight rankings, so there’s a good chance this move to welterweight is only temporary – at least for the time being.