Recent Bellator signee Ben Henderson will be fighting for the promotion's welterweight title this weekend, and he was a guest on The MMA Hour recently to talk about the move and his future plans. Henderson has always stated that he would retire relatively early from the sport, and at 32, he may not have many more fights in him. Not in the cage anyway.
Surprisingly, he stated on the show that he's interested in a whole other type of fight - the armed forces. Bendo believes that he will join the reserves of one of the combat branches in the near future (transcribed by MMA Mania):
"The real reason, to be frank with you, is that I will end up joining the military ranks. I've always held a pretty strong civic duty. Us as Americans, we need to do a better job period. Kids always say for the longest time, oh I was going to join the Marines, oh I was going to join the Army, this or that. Every 22-year old says that. It's something that I always felt.
"When I'm older, when I'm 50, I want to be able to tell my kids, I want to tell my grandkids, hey, you have a civic duty to your country. To serve, to give back. What have you done for your country besides eating the food and using the electricity? What have you done for your country? It was something I felt pretty strongly about and I'm finding out there are other ways to go about doing it, but I can do it while still having an MMA career."
The reserves aren't exactly the regular forces, so it's unlikely that he would figure into any major offensives. But if his country did go to war? Henderson wouldn't want to, but if he had to, he would:
"I'd be open to it. I've talked to my wife about it. If that's a possibility, if that's a duty that that branch of the military feels I'm best fit for, sure. No problem. Is it something I want to do? I'm not 21, I'm not 18, I don't want to go to war and do this...nah, I'm old man. I don't need to prove myself and go to war and all this stuff. But, if that's what's called on, and that's what it takes, you know ..."