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Dan Henderson and Rafael Cavalcante talk March 5 match-up

In a little more than a week Strikeforce will once again take to the airwaves offering a card packed with talent including a pair of title-fights and a few undercard clashes featuring divisionally relevant rhubarbs. Two of the men competing for a championship on March 5 in Columbus, Dan Henderson and current divisional king Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante, recently spoke about their upcoming headliner in a conference call with media where they expressed their excitement in the challenge before them at the event as well as their comfort in all phases of the fight with “Hendo” going so far as to say he felt one of them would likely end up unconscious

“I don’t think it’s a big secret both of us are going to be looking for the knockout,” Henderson explained. “We’re both big finishers and most of our finishes have been by strikes. I definitely plan to knock him silly and pressure him the whole time.”

While 10-2 Cavalcante didn’t go into detail about his plan against the PRIDE/UFC veteran he did explain he was comfortable no matter where the fight ended up. “I like the matchup with Dan wherever it goes: standing up, in the clinch, on the ground, boxing. I’ve put together a strong strategy with my training partners and I just feel really confident for this fight. Wherever the fight goes I’m well prepared for it.”

Speaking of his fellow Team Black House members Anderson Silva and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, both of whom have beaten Henderson before in the past, “Feijao” replied, “We train together every day. I have asked them about their fights against Dan and asked them what they think I need to do. They have told me what they think will work and we have been working on those things.”

The 26-8 Henderson, who fought Silva in Columbus at UFC 82 and is a native Californian, brought up the topic of the fans in Ohio as well during the call. “I’m excited to go back there; not excited to go back to the cold but excited to fight in front of those fans who are always so excited to watch our fights.”

As far as motivation, the 205-pounders paid due respect to one another saying the test ahead spawns the primary excitement each current feels this close to the show.

“I was very excited to find out I was fighting someone like Henderson,” began the Brazilian. “My goal is to fight the best in the world. Cardio could be the key in the fight but I’ve been training five rounds with different sparring partners, so I’ll be ready.”

The Team Quest patriarch echoed Cavalcante’s sentiments, saying, “I think the Columbus fans are really going to enjoy this. This definitely keeps me excited about still being able to compete in this sport and challenging myself in what is going to be a very tough opponent.”

Viewers can tune in starting at 10:00 PM EST on Showtime. In addition to Cavalcante vs. Henderson, “Strikeforce: Columbus” will feature Marloes Coenen defending her 135-pound strap against undefeated Marine veteran Liz Carmouche as well as powerful kickboxer Melvin Manhoef in action against the well-rounded Tim Kennedy and lightweight Jorge Masvidal making his Strikeforce debut against 11-0 Billy Evangelista.

5 COMMENTS
  • Guthookd says:

    “…rhubarbs”

    :)

    This could be good. If he gets caught with a fully telegraphed highly visible hendo-wound right hand though, I will simply piss my self and go to bed.

  • Creature says:

    lol he feels comfortable everywhere.. he better not get to comfortable standing or in the clinch with someone with as much devestating power and grecko skill like hendo.. or he might end up in a lot of pain after the fight.. should be great tho. im going with hendo via ko round 2 or 3. :)

  • Dufresne says:

    >Cardio could be the key in the fight but I’ve been training five rounds with different sparring partners, so I’ll be ready.

    The fact that he acknowledges that his cardio has sucked in the past is a good thing. And hopefully Hendo has been working on his cardio as well so he doesn’t end up gassing if this does go into the later rounds.

    I’m not sure what’s going to happen in this fight. Hendo of course has big power and an adamantium chin, but he’s also 40 years old and I haven’t seen any noticeable improvements to his game in several years while the rest of MMA has been catching up to him. Cavalcante on the other hand is 30 years old and has been steadily improving over the last few years, but he hasn’t been tested by anywhere near the same level fighters and has been finished by strikes in one of his losses (which is exactly infinity times more than Hendo has been stopped by strikes).

    I personally think Hendo will take this fight. I haven’t seen nearly as many Cavalcante fights as I have Hendo fights, but in the few I’ve seen his cardio was obviously his two biggest weaknesses are his cardio and his ability to fight off his back. Both of those could be pretty serious handicaps when fighting a Greco-Roman wrestler that has heavy hands and is evidently impossible to KO.

  • Brendhan Conlan says:

    I like to occasionally work “rhubarb” in as a substitute for “fight” as tribute to my Dad (who is by no means a MMA fan but definitely a lover of words).

  • Rece Rock says:

    If hendo wins the strap then Coker needs to stop pushing Fedor as the first alternate in the GP and start pushing Fedor as a legitimate contender for the LHW title and announce that the fight between Hendo & Fedor is in the works… Ofcoarse hendo gotta win first :)

    And no i don’t think he deserves a title shot after back 2 back losses it’s simply just what I would do marketing wise to crate the best scenario in with limited resources

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