Dan Henderson has made it known that he wants to test his skills against current UFC light heavyweight champ Jon Jones.

First, however, Henderson must get past Mauricio “Shogun” Rua in the main event of UFC 139 this Saturday night from San Jose, California. “Hendo” will be making his return to the UFC after departing from the organization and signing with Strikeforce. While in Strikeforce, Henderson claimed the 205-pound title and defeated Fedor Emelianenko.

This meeting with Rua, a former UFC light heavyweight title-holder himself, is a battle of ex-PRIDE stars who never matched up while competing in Japan. It is also possible that the winner becomes one of the top contenders to the UFC title, falling just behind Rashad Evans in the line for the next title shot.

“I think he’s always been a little bit hot and cold, but when he’s on, he’s a little dangerous and tough,” said Henderson, in a recent interview with MMAWeekly. “When he’s off, he’s still tough just not quite as tough as he normally would be. Everybody has those days, but it seems like the last couple of years he’s been hot and cold.”

As for Jones, Henderson believes he could have been the man to match up with him at UFC 140 instead of Lyoto Machida had Evans’ injury been known earlier than reported.

“Had Rashad said he was injured two or three weeks earlier, I probably would have had that fight instead of Machida,” Henderson said. “I do think that would be a fight I would enjoy (facing Jones). I think he matches up really well with me style-wise.”


MMATraining Take: Henderson will need to be careful with Rua, as he looks very confident following his recent win over Forrest Griffin. If Henderson takes care of business and doesn’t just look for the knockout of Rua, he should be able to use his wrestling skills to take Rua down and claim the decision.