UFC Fight Night: Belfort vs. Henderson – Winners and losers

The Brazilian fighters put on a show at UFC Fight Night Sao Paulo as most of the big winners of the event did so…

By: Michael Hutchinson | 8 years ago
UFC Fight Night: Belfort vs. Henderson – Winners and losers
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The Brazilian fighters put on a show at UFC Fight Night Sao Paulo as most of the big winners of the event did so in front of a home crowd. A young Brazilian with a perfect record continued to show that he has the skills to become a champion one day, while an old champion showed the world that he still has the skills of a Phenom.

Here are your winners and losers for UFC Fight Night: Belfort vs. Hendrson 3:


Thomas Almeida continues to impress in the most spectacular ways. The reason he is the big winner on the card is the fact that his win will have a profound affect on his career moving forward. Almeida has had back to back knockouts, a perfect record and resides in a division in need of new stars. The knockout of Birchak was a statement for Almeida that he is ready to challenge the big dogs at 135 pounds.

Vitor Belfort put on a repeat performance of his last fight with Henderson. For Belfort, the win doesn’t necessarily raise his stock as he performed the exact same way that he did two years ago. The win does keep Belfort relevant in the division and answers the question of if he is still a dangerous fighter without TRT and with the improved drug testing. It was also the most exciting moment for the crowd tonight and a special moment for a legend in the sport.

Alex Oliveira had a tough task in front of him in Piotr Hallmann. Although Oliveira did a great job of striking in the first round, the major criticism of “Cowboy” was that he wouldn’t be able to maintain a pace against a grappler. Although he had trouble in the second round, Oliveira silenced all of the doubters in the third round with a thunderous KO. The Lightweight division is extremely stacked, and getting a clean KO victory is the only way to separate yourself from the rest, which is what Oliveira did.

Glover Teixeira is in a similar position to Vitor Belfort. The win was a great moment as the Brazilian was in his home country, but the result was somewhat expected. The win won’t improve Teixeira’s ranking in the division, but does keep his name relevant. Whether or not the 36 year old will be able to make another run at a title will remain to be seen. Finishing back to back prospects does warrant the former title challenger a Top 5 opponent for his next fight.

Other winners: Thiago Tavares, Gleison Tibau, Rashid Magomedov and Chas Skelly


Dan Henderson could only have improved since his last performance against Belfort, or at least that was the hope. For Henderson, losing the exact same way to the exact same person as you did two years ago doesn’t bode well for him. Henderson didn’t get to show anything in the fight, and although the stoppage may have been early, the replays showed that the lights did go off for a second. This could be a worry for Henderson as it is the third time in his last six fights where he’s been knocked down and finished. I doubt that Henderson will let that be his last fight because it was his least impressive performance to date.

Clay Guida’s move to the Featherweight division has not worked out like he wanted it to. As a Lightweight in the UFC, Guida was only stopped twice in 16 fights. In his six fights at Featherweight, Guida has gone 3-3 with all three of his losses coming by stoppage (two submissions and one TKO). The submission loss to Tavares at 39 seconds of the first round was the fastest in UFC Featherweight history. It was also the first time in nine years that Guida had been defeated in the first round.

Patrick Cummins has found himself in a strange situation. Cummins is on the edge of the Top 15 at Light Heavyweight. The division is one of the weakest in the sport, and it only takes a win or two to get into the top of the rankings. The problem for Cummins is that in his seven UFC fights, he has lost three by knockout. As a Division 1 wrestler who got into the MMA game later in his life, having several knockout losses does not reflect well. Cummins may not have the time to develop the head movement to avoid the power punchers in the division, and getting knocked out three times in two years isn’t good for any fighter.

Fabio Maldonado is in the exact same position as Patrick Cummins, but for different reasons. Maldonado is on the edge of the Top 15 at Light Heavyweight, but has not been able to break through and beat a Top 10 guy. The reason for this is, like Cummins, Maldonado still has a huge hole in his game. While Cummins has a long way to improve in his striking, Maldonado needs to desperately work on his takedown defense and submission game. At 35 years old, its also doubtful that he’ll be able to improve in time to make any sort of impact in the Light Heavyweight division.

Other losers: Anthony Birchak, Piotr Hallmann and Gilbert Burns

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Michael Hutchinson
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