Ultimate Fighting Championship lightweight champion, Ben Henderson, wants a shot at current welterweight champ Georges St. Pierre if he defeats Gilbert Melendez on April 20 at UFC on Fox 7.
That is, if GSP emerges victorious when he faces Nick Diaz at UFC 158.
“I see all this talk about super fights and other fighters getting to dictate what weight classes they want to move up and down to in order to get title shots,” Henderson stated, per MMAFghting.com. “I’m the UFC’s lightweight champion and I feel I should be allowed to make such statements myself. … I want to fight in the biggest fights and against the best fighters. Georges St. Pierre is one of the greatest fighters in our sport’s history. Of course I’d love to fight him, and I think the fans would want to see that fight too. It would be an honor to go up against such a great competitor, especially with a title on the line.”
A GSP vs. Ben Henderson bout wouldn’t be as big as an Anderson Silva vs. GSP or Jon Jones fight, but it would give the UFC the opportunity to hold a rare champion vs. champion bout. Henderson matches up well against GSP, and with 15 extra pounds of muscle, he should be able to give the Canadian a serious test.
Unfortunately for Benson, UFC president Dana White apparently doesn’t see a super-fight against GSP in his near future, shutting down the idea during the Feb. 26 episode of “UFC Tonight.”
“No. That’s not going to happen either,” White fired back without hesitation. “It’s not gonna happen. He just won that title not too long ago. There are plenty of guys in the 155 division to defend that title against, and a possible fight with Aldo if he moves up to 155, a possible fight with Pettis a couple of fights away.”
While Dana is right about the fact there are multiple potential challengers for “Bendo” in the lightweight division, his refusal to even consider Henderson’s suggestion is a bit strange.
After all, the first champion vs. champion bout in the UFC took place because then lightweight champion, BJ Penn, had the stones to step up and challenge GSP for the welterweight title.
Ironically, while Dana wasn’t receptive to Henderson’s idea, he still hopes that a Silva vs. Jones bout will take place later on this year even though it couldn’t be any clearer that neither man really wants the fight.
“Anderson and Jones, that’s the fight I want to see,” White added.