Should Hendo be allowed to defend both belts?

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POLL: Do you think Hendo should be allowed to defend both belts?
Yes 83% (50)
No 17% (10)
AchillesHeel
5/5/07 3:45:18PM
With the purchase of Pride and the apparent role of Dana White in its operation, I'm skeptical about Dan Henderson holding two belts simultaneously. Even before the sale, Pride executives were saying that they were going to set up title defenses more often. If Dana is really going to have a hand in it, I would guess that Henderson will be encouraged to relinquish one of the belts.

You might say, "Heck, let him defend both belts, if he can. Chances are he'll lose one eventually, and the problem will work itself out." I agree with the reasoning, but there's one flaw with it: Belt holders are given all kinds of slack when it comes to being ready to fight, and almost every UFC champ has postponed title fights due to injuries. Frank Mir's motorcycle accident is the only time I can remember of an injury so severe that the champ was asked to give up the belt.

From a fan's perspective, I'm not sure it makes sense for one guy to hold two belts. After all, if things go smoothly and Henderson avoids an injury, he could fight four times a year? And that's probably pushing it. If he's allowed to postpone a title fight due to an injury, then he might defend each belt once in 2007. If he participates in the "Super Bowl of MMA", which I assume will not be title fights, he might not even defend each belt once before the end of the year.

From a challenger's perspective, this blows like a hurricane. Shogun must be champing at the bit for a shot at the 205-lb belt, and rightly so. I'm sure all of us would love to see that fight. But what does that mean for Paulo Filho and Denis Kang? If Hendo fights Shogun in, say, July or August, Filho and Kang might as well just drop to 170 and go after Pride's new Welterweight belt, because they might not get a shot at the 185-lb belt until next Spring.

Of course Filho and Kang would have to be co-favorites to win the Pride Welterweight belt, if they choose to go after it. So you could end up with some bizarre scenario where the 185-lb title fight is (a) a consolation prize for whoever loses the 170-lb title fight or (b) someone like Suloev or Gono gets a title shot instead of Filho or Kang because they decided not to hang around and wait.
Manfred
5/5/07 4:27:18PM
I would think as long as he defends one at least every 3-5 months, then he's earned it. They should give him the choice of fighting often or fessing one of the belts up.
Fanboy 1988
5/5/07 6:11:05PM
He worked hard to earn those belts, he should atleast get a chance to defend them, not just have to hand them over.
Mastodon2
5/5/07 6:36:03PM
I think he should reluinquish one of the belts, and preferrably stay at 205lb so we can see Shogun finally get the belt he deserves, from the man he should rightfully take it from, but even if Hendo did fight 4 times a year, which is a lot, he would only be able to defend each belt twice. 2 title matches for each belt in one year? That aint enough for me as a fan, and for the contenders its not enough either.
nubby
5/5/07 6:36:37PM

Posted by Fanboy 1988

He worked hard to earn those belts, he should atleast get a chance to defend them, not just have to hand them over.


Yes but not at the cost of forcing contenders to wait twice as long at a title shot. It needs to be treated as though he were two different people defending two different belts. I figure the only slack they give him is that he doesn't have to defend them on the same night. So if the fights are one month apart, that is the chance he has to be willing to take.
Mastodon2
5/5/07 7:03:34PM

Posted by nubby


Posted by Fanboy 1988

He worked hard to earn those belts, he should atleast get a chance to defend them, not just have to hand them over.


Yes but not at the cost of forcing contenders to wait twice as long at a title shot. It needs to be treated as though he were two different people defending two different belts. I figure the only slack they give him is that he doesn't have to defend them on the same night. So if the fights are one month apart, that is the chance he has to be willing to take.



I imagine this might be their solution, its the fairest compromise
JimiMak
5/5/07 7:34:16PM

Posted by nubby


Posted by Fanboy 1988

He worked hard to earn those belts, he should atleast get a chance to defend them, not just have to hand them over.


Yes but not at the cost of forcing contenders to wait twice as long at a title shot. It needs to be treated as though he were two different people defending two different belts. I figure the only slack they give him is that he doesn't have to defend them on the same night. So if the fights are one month apart, that is the chance he has to be willing to take.



I'd think they's also have to allow for SAC suspensions. Let him defend them just force the fights to go back n forth in weight and have them as often as possible. I think continuity of title history is important. He earned them. And some ppl saying 2 defenses each belt isn't enuf, I agree but that isn't much off the pace anyway. Chuck only fights 2-3 times/ yr.
Ultimate_fighter
5/5/07 7:39:45PM
I dont think he should. If you have a contract to one company only defend those titles, not got a win another companies.
teamquestnorth
5/5/07 8:05:07PM
he should without a doubt be allowed to defend both belts assuming he defends both at LEAST twice a year.
mkiv9secsupra
5/5/07 9:23:27PM
definitely yes if he can defend both twice a year so 4 fights a year. but he probly cant. why should someone who worked just as hard as he did to get a title shot have to wait longer for the fight. all the ufc champs defend their belt two times a year. and he is two different champs at once so make him defend each twice a year.or every 16-18 months, giving him 4-5 months in between which is plenty of time.
hippysmacker
5/6/07 5:00:01AM

Posted by greshamfighter

he should without a doubt be allowed to defend both belts assuming he defends both at LEAST twice a year.



Agreed. If he defends each twice a year it will be a huge step up in title defenses compared to the old Pride. I'd give him the leeway, he earned those belts. Still ,I think he will lose the 205 lb. within 2 defenses, and reign at 185 for a good long while( barring injury)
jdubs
5/6/07 9:06:42AM
hell yea he should, he won the title fights, if they take one away he should go some where else. as far as defending them, i dont think that is a big issue because he is bound to loose one of them within the next year. if not he should defend one twice a year and the other once.
AchillesHeel
5/6/07 9:13:49AM

Posted by Manfred

I would think as long as he defends one at least every 3-5 months, then he's earned it. They should give him the choice of fighting often or fessing one of the belts up.


He's been part of 13 fight cards* over the last 60 months. That's an average of one fight every 4-and-a-half months, which is right in line with what you're saying. However, a few of those fights were at 205 lbs, even before he had two belts, which contributed to his lack of title defenses.

It's already been three months since he defeated Silva, but I expect there's been a delay for every Pride fighter due to the sale. Let's say he fights in August. Then he fights again in December, as part of a "Super Bowl of MMA" (he says he wants to fight Liddell). Then he fights again in March or April of 2008.

So we would have to wait 11 months for either a 205-lb or 185-lb title fight. My guess is they'll give Shogun a shot before they give Filho or Kang a shot, but that's just a guess. They've set up Filho and Kang to compete not just with each other, but with Shogun, for a title shot.

Keep in mind, this would be regardless of whether he wins or loses either fight. If he won both, rinse and repeat for another year.




* He fought 14 fights over 13 events; he had two fights on 09/25/05, the finale of the 185-lb tournament. I counted that as one fight, for these purposes.
rcg916
5/6/07 2:48:00PM

Posted by Mastodon2

I think he should reluinquish one of the belts, and preferrably stay at 205lb so we can see Shogun finally get the belt he deserves, from the man he should rightfully take it from, but even if Hendo did fight 4 times a year, which is a lot, he would only be able to defend each belt twice. 2 title matches for each belt in one year? That aint enough for me as a fan, and for the contenders its not enough either.



Champs dont defend much more often than twice a year, so whats the difference? He should at least get the option...
Lay_N_Pray
5/6/07 5:45:07PM
I would love to see Hendo defend both belts and I think he will, because to be honest he will lose 205 soon enough. I think Shogun is waiting in the wings to take that one so he may only have one defense, if that, with the 205 strap.

But I think it is a challenge he would be up to and something that should happen just to see if it is a veesible option in the future if it were to happen again like most champions talk about trying.
randyleprechaun
5/7/07 1:36:18PM

Posted by hippysmacker

Agreed. If he defends each twice a year it will be a huge step up in title defenses compared to the old Pride. I'd give him the leeway, he earned those belts. Still ,I think he will lose the 205 lb. within 2 defenses, and reign at 185 for a good long while( barring injury)



I dunno Paulo Filho might have something to say about that!

AdamG
5/8/07 4:12:46PM
Hollywood earned those belts and there's no way they'll force him to give one up. Imagine how many forum threads would spawn from such an injustice! They'll make him defend a title every time he fights until he loses one. That would be a step up from the old Pride which had fighters defend once a year.

It would be pretty sweet if Hendo gave one belt up and a tournament was held to declare a new champion. Although, I don't see tournaments becoming too common with the postponing of this year's lightweight grand prix.

Either way, I don't see Hendo holding on to the LHW belt for long, as Shogun should get the next shot and then Sodkoujou, Silva, Noguiera and Arona not too far behind. I read in an interview that Sodkoujou won't fight Henderson, so Hendo holding onto the LHW belt (not likely) would really wrench things up if he beats Shogun.
AchillesHeel
5/8/07 4:21:30PM
I agree that Shogun has an excellent chance to make Hendo's reign a short one.

I hope that Henderson doesn't participate in the cross-promotion event that Dana White wants to set up. If he defends one of the belts in, say, August, he could defend the other in November or December. That wouldn't be too bad, I guess.

It's kinda lame to make somebody wait so long for a title shot, but I also agree that Henderson won both belts legitimately. I imagine Dana White wouldn't let a current champion take a title fight in another weight class, but I don't think it would be a good move to force Henderson to relinquish one of the belts.

Best-case scenario, imho, is Henderson fights Shogun in August and loses. I don't like rooting against a guy like this but... well... there it is...

Naturaldisaster
5/9/07 9:59:38AM
Henderson should definitly not be stripped of his titles, he earned them, so he should keep both of them until he loses them. even though they might only be defended twice a year each. The last time I looked, Title fights aren't what MMA is all about. Yeah there awesome and I love to see someone win a title but MMA is about the sport itself, not a piece of leather and gold or whatever around your waist. Its about competition, and as long as there is still good competition I could car less if they only have 4 title fights a year
Zvonimir
5/13/07 1:36:13AM
2 defenses of each belt for year would be sufficient in my eyes. Like others have said, he earned both those belts.
kaduey
5/16/07 11:34:15PM
Henderson will lose both titles on their first defences. He isn't underrated like some may think. Henderson is very inconsistent and gets really sloppy as the fight progresses. Filho will take his 183 belt and Shogun will take the 205 belt.