Esther Lin for MMA Fighting
The main event of UFC On Fox 5 didn't disappoint in action, though it may have depressed fans in Stockton, CA
The UFC On Fox 5 main event featured the Lightweight title fight between champion Ben Henderson and challenger Nate Diaz. Suprisingly, Nate wrapped up with Ben early and put his back against the cage. Both fighters looked for trips while working in strikes.Bendo eventually got the takedown and looked for ground and pound. Back to the feet and Henderson landed solid leg kicks. The champ did a lot to frustrate Diaz and nullify the reach and height advantage.
With the first strike of the second round, Ben capitalized on Nate's refusal to check leg kicks. He took the contender down, landed some solid shots then a headkick as Diaz stood up. Despite Henderson offense Diaz was relentless until Ben landed a big left hook that put him down. Ben tried to finish but Nate recovered. Nate hit a hiptoss from the clinch, but Bendo got right back to his feet. The low leg kick from Benson took Nate off his front foot almost every time he threw it.
Third round and Ben went right back to the low leg kick. Diaz had no answer for it. Ben got a couple takedowns but he was rightfully hesitant to enter the challenger's guard. Nate scrambled for a leg lock. Ben defended and got on top then took back control. Nate attacked the leg again with no success before they stood up. Ben landed a big right that floored Nate who recovered quickly. Ben landed some hard shots on the ground as the round ended.
The champ got a takedown early. In pure Ben Henderson fashion he risked control to land the damaging blows on the ground. The fourth round was all Henderson. He wrestled him down and punished him while avoiding Nate's dynamic Jiu Jitsu. The Seattle crowd erupted late in the round, they are Henderson fans without a doubt.
It didn't take long for Ben to clinch up and pressure Nate against the fence. Henderson lifted Nate above his head and dropped him to the mount. Powerful ground shots as Nate worked to get back to his feet. Henderson got him down again and continued with the power strikes on the ground. Nate got up to eat another head kick from Ben. Ben showboated at the end dropping both hands and scoffing at Nate's headkick attempt. Ben Henderson held onto his title with a unanimous decision (50-43, 50-45, 50-45) win over Nate Diaz