Michael Chandler enters free of charge company with precisely the form of overall performance a veteran fighter seeking to score his very last large deal would want to have.
Friday night, Chandler (21-5 MMA, 18-5 BMMA), the a few-time previous Bellator lightweight winner, scored a gorgeous initial-spherical knockout of 1 of the most difficult fighters in the sport to end, previous UFC and WEC light-weight king Benson Henderson, in the opening round of their Bellator 243 most important celebration.
The time of the stoppage was 2:09 at Mohegan Solar Arena in Uncasville, Conn., in favor of the fighter who has been with the marketing due to the fact Bellator 31 in 2010.
“If this is the very last time I step in the Bellator cage, every person in the dwelling … you fellas have no notion the influence you led on my lifetime,” Chandler said all through his publish-battle interview. “I am not who I am with out the corporation of Bellator.”
Chandler’s first struggle versus Henderson (28-9 MMA, 5-4 BMMA) in 2016 went the length before he received the nod, and the duo appeared to be going at a speed that instructed they had been ready to go all the way once more. Both equally fighters scored, Henderson in distinct performing harm with physique kicks.
But then Chandler’s significant still left hand struck. Chandler dropped him with a shot to the jaw, sending Henderson crashing on hands and knees to the mat. A observe up shot appeared to graze the top of Henderson’s head, and a few far more punches landed in advance of the bout was waved off.
Chandler had his 16th job stoppage victory. He’s received two in a row and five of his past six. Henderson, who was stopped for just the second time in his job, had a 4-struggle get streak snapped.
The light-weight bout was the Bellator 243 primary event at Mohegan Solar Arena in Uncasville, Conn. It aired on Paramount and streamed on DAZN next prelims on MMA Junkie.
Full Bellator 243 results:
Michael Chandler def. Benson Henderson through knockout (punch) — Round 1, 2:09
Timothy Johnson def. Matt Mitrione by way of TKO (punches) — Round 1, 3:14
Sabah Homasi def. Curtis Millender through unanimous determination (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Adam Borics def. Mike Hamel by means of split final decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Cris Lencioni def. A.J. Agazarm via unanimous determination (30-26, 30-27, 29-28)
Valerie Loureda def. Tara Graff through TKO (punches) — Round 2, 5:00
Grant Neal def. Hamza Salim via unanimous conclusion (30-26, 30-27, 30-24)
Charlie Campbell def. Nainoa Dung through TKO (leg kicks) — Round 2, 1:42
Dalton Rosta def. Mark Gardner by using TKO (health practitioner stoppage) — Round 1, 5:00