Rafael dos Anjos did what just about nobody out there thought he could: defeat former UFC lightweight champion Benson Henderson.
Dos Anjos, a 4-to-1 underdog at UFC Fight Night 49 Saturday evening, landed a double-knee and followed up with a left-hand that caught “Smooth” flush. Henderson fell to the canvas and RDA landed a few more shots before the referee stepped in.
“I was training for everything,” dos Anjos said. “I work a lot on my striking and knew my striking was better. The plan was to be patient through the first round.
“I knew I was the underdog, but I proved who I am. Ben Henderson is a great champion and I respect him a lot, but it is my time.”
Henderson tried to protest the stoppage, but this one was all over once dos Anjos landed that shot. The win was the second straight since a loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov earlier this year. He is 7-1 in his last eight fights overall, including three by finish.
“I will fight whoever and prepare for everything,” he said. “No words (can describe this). I just want to thank Jesus Christ. This victory is for him.”