Is it mere coincidence that six of Dan Henderson's eight career losses were suffered at the hands of fighters who stand 6-feet or taller?
That's the burning question fight fans have been wondering since it was announced that "Hendo" will be squaring off against the 6-foot-4 Jon "Bones" Jones on Labor Day weekend at UFC 151.
"Hendo" already kicked off the pre-fight hype with some serious smack talk, claiming that Jones doesn't come across as genuine.
"I don't know, I think it all has to do with him being genuine," Henderson said in an MMAMania.com report. "The fans sense when you are and you are not. I'm pretty much who I am all the time. I don't know if they get that impression from him. [When asked if he thought the same] Not really, he was a little better after his fight with Rashad than he has been in the past, but I have not gotten that impression from him, no. His whole attitude, it's not completely not genuine, but I think that is what the fans are turned off by. I don't know him personally, so I can't say if it's genuine or not, it's just the impression that I think that is what the fans get."
Putting personalities and trash-talking aside, Henderson should concern himself more with the stylistic mismatch and insane height disadvantage he faces.
Not only is it difficult to find a training partner who can emulate Jones' signature style, Henderson has also never stepped into the cage with a fighter taller than 6-foot-3.
Henderson hasn't been matched up with an opponent as tall as Jones in his 15 years of professional fighting, and that inexperience may be costly.
To make matters worse for the 41-year-old legend, Jones' ridiculous 84.5-inch reach is 13.5 inches longer than his. Breakdownfights.com says that fighters with a reach advantage of eight inches or more win 65 percent of the time. In April, Rashad Evans struggled to cut the distance on Jones because and his reach was 75 inches.
Jones is just too tall and too strong for "Hendo" at this point in his career, and I see this one getting stopped early.
Even if the 41-year-old legend has plenty of gas left in the tank, the huge reach and height advantage will make a significant difference in the fight.
Additionally, Henderson raised some eyebrows in his last fight when he got caught with a barrage of uppercuts by Mauricio "Shogun" Rua, that left him momentarily staggered.
You can hit this guy with a baseball bat and he'll keep pressing the action, but Rua's technique may cause Henderson to think about changing his signature stance.
He's been known to arch his back and crouch forward in order to throw his devastating right hook, but Rua found the holes in his stance to break through with some punishing uppercuts.
There's no question that Jones studied the film from that fight, and he'll be looking to find the same holes in Henderson's stance.
Jones also has some unique weapons in his arsenal, as his elbows carve people up and his front kicks are absolutely vicious.
Is Dan Henderson in over his head against Jones Jones? Let me know in the comments.
Eric Holden is a lifelong UFC fan and supporter of the sport of mixed martial arts. Follow him on Twitter @ericholden.
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