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Henderson Set To Defend Lightweight Title Versus Melendez

Posted by Jack "The Hammer" Howard on 4/15/2013 7:21:46 PM

UFC Lightweight champion Benson Henderson has been a force since he made the move from the WEC to the UFC back in April 2011. The champion will look to continue his dominance when he returns to the Octagon this Saturday. Henderson will be looking for his seventh-straight win and the chance to remain undefeated in the promotion when he takes on newcomer Gilbert Melendez in the main event at the UFC on Fox: Henderson vs. Melendez event. Henderson isn’t an overwhelming sports betting favorite against the former Strikeforce Lightweight champion and final belt holder in the lightweight division for the now extinct promotion, but he has been dominant in the UFC to date.

UFC on FOX: Henderson vs. Melendez
Benson Henderson (18-2-0) vs Gilbert Melendez
Saturday April 20, 2013
HP Pavilion, San Jose California
UFC Sportsbook Line: Henderson – 285

Melendez was equally dominant competing in Strikeforce, ending his run in the promotion with seven-straight wins including six interim title and title defenses. At 31-years old, Melendez is the third-ranked lightweight in the world according to most rankings and should be one of the tougher tests yet for Henderson.

UFC Betting Preview: Benson Henderson

Trained extensively in both Taekwondo and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Henderson’s technical background is even stronger because of the fact that he was an NAIA All-American Wrestler, which has made him that much more lethal. With his incredible speed and quickness, Henderson has thrived against the top betting competition in the UFC, with each of his last six wins coming via unanimous decision. Opponents that understand Henderson’s submission strengths have been that much more cautious in the Octagon and prevented him from locking in too many dangerous holds, but Henderson’s skill and fitness have allowed him to dictate the pace of online betting fights without the risk of getting caught in a vulnerable spot.

UFC Betting Preview: Gilbert Melendez

Melendez is also incredibly quick, which will make him able to push Henderson in that department, and he has the knockout power to end a fight at a moment’s notice. 11 of Melendez’s 21 wins have come via knockout, although only once in his last five wins has the former Strikeforce champion landed a KO and not won via unanimous decision. Hungry to prove himself, Melendez should be the toughest challenger to Henderson’s title reign yet. However, in order to win he must be confident in taking risks and not hold back with the chance to steal the title.

UFC Betting Preview: Outlook & Pick

This will be the toughest title defense for Henderson yet and he will be pushed, but ultimately the champion has been able to dictate the pace of fights and score some unanimous decision wins without taking too many lumps, and that should be the case again this time around. Henderson has been very careful not to put himself in vulnerable positions and win fights based on technical merit, so don’t expect him to veer away from that when he takes on Melendez this Saturday.

UFC Betting Pick: Benson Henderson

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