Bellator signs Bendo

February 1, 2016

Former UFC lightweight champion Benson Henderson has signed with Bellator MMA.  Henderson made the announcement on his web site on Monday.

Henderson’s last fight with the UFC was in November in South Korea.  Perhaps a sign that he would not return, after his win Henderson casually took off his UFC gloves in the Octagon.

Henderson thanked Dana White and Lorenzo Fertitta in his blog post for the opportunities.

Henderson is 23-5 overall and 11-3 in the UFC.  Prior to that, Henderson had a successful career in the WEC as its lightweight champion.

Payout Perspective:

There is no news on whether there are matching rights in his UFC contract and if so whether or not they will exercise them to retain Henderson.  If Henderson makes it to Bellator, it immediately enhances the lightweight and/or welterweight divisions for the company.  Henderson becomes the first UFC fighter to switch organizations at a point in his career where he is still valuable (sorry Phil Davis, Josh Koscheck, Stephan Bonnar).  The move is great for Bellator.  MMA Payout will keep you posted.

5 Responses to “Bellator signs Bendo”

  1. Cutch on February 1st, 2016 1:18 PM

    I would say Phil Davis is still a top fighter, he’s probably ranked 6 in his division, granted his division is pretty weak.

  2. tops E on February 1st, 2016 2:14 PM

    Hahahaha….fanboys would now trash henderson…..good move, keep sponsors and get away from reebok cheapie deal hahaha

  3. d on February 1st, 2016 3:24 PM

    Tops continues to go nuts after reviewing Waddell and Reed’s drained PBC money. He can’t accept the reality.

  4. BrainSmasher on February 1st, 2016 5:41 PM

    Henderson is good but he no longer had much value in the UFC. He has fought about everyone. He wasn’t going to be champ again and he wasn’t popukar to warrant paying him big money. I honestly don’t think ufc cared to bring him back. I do think they will try to keep sterling and Reem. But at the same time there is limits what the will pay for a unknown and a declining star. But they do want them where as I don’t think they cared to keep Bendo!

  5. mmaguru on February 4th, 2016 10:43 AM

    Agree with BrainSmasher. Henderson has much more value for Bellator than for the UFC. One would hope that they didn’t end up overpaying for him to acquire his services. I would think the biggest differentiation when it comes to pay is with a signing bonus plus additional revenues Henderson can get from advertisements.

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