• UFC 139

Referee should have saved Shogun - Henderson

ESPN staff
December 2, 2011
Mauricio Shogun Rua and Dan Henderson traded blows for five brutal rounds at UFC 139 © Getty Images

Dan Henderson has given a considered view of his UFC 139 classic with Mauricio Shogun Rua, suggesting the Brazilian should have been stopped by the referee in the third round.

Henderson and Rua produced one of the all-time great MMA contests, wading through five punishing rounds with Hendo an eventual victor.

The pattern of the fight saw Henderson largely dominant for three rounds, the latter of which saw him almost finish the fight when raining bombs on Shogun. However, Rua then fought back in the last two stanzas, running out of time as the final klaxon sounded with Henderson in real trouble.

Both men went to hospital after the fight and need significant time to recover, but Henderson believes he should have been celebrating a far easier victory, suggesting the referee could have saved both men the final two rounds.

"It was a good one to watch, but I think the fans would have been talking quite a bit about it too if it ended after three rounds with him barely living through it," Hendo told Sherdog.

"But yeah, I guess it made it more dramatic with him kind of coming back at the end of that fourth and fifth round. It could be good for the sport. I know there's probably a lot more new fans that watched that fight that are hooked now.

"I think [the referee] could have stopped it and I don't think anyone would have bitched… honestly I don't know how good that was for [Shogun's] head, to take that much beating and still take more after that.

"That's more of a question for the doctors and the people that are doing the head scans on him. Maybe that took a toll on his chin and he won't be able to do that again."

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