Anthony “Showtime” Pettis will attempt to take the title from UFC lightweight champion Benson Henderson in a rematch set for UFC 164. It’s a compelling match up, especially considering how dramatically Pettis defeated Henderson when they met at WEC 53.
Since then, Henderson and Pettis have both had great runs. Henderson has racked up seven straight wins, including three title defenses, while Pettis has won his last three. With both of them on tears through the lightweight division, a rematch seemed inevitable.
According to Pettis’s head coach Duke Roufus though, this isn’t a fight that Benson Henderson wants to be in.
On an episode of The MMA Hour, Roufus stated that:
“I just think personally, as a former competitor, I lost to Maurice Smith in 1996, he’s older than me, and I’m old, but if somebody said, ‘Hey, we’ll put a fight on between the two of you,’ I’m going to go fight. I just think someone who lost a fight would want to take that fight again, especially in the manner that it went down. I mean, he didn’t really push for that fight and I really believe round six is coming in this fight on Saturday. Anthony has this guy’s number. It’s going to show Saturday night. I think Anthony improved in every area that Benson Henderson is going to try and attack Anthony.”
Interestingly, their first match up went down in Glendale, Arizona, not far at all from Henderson’s home base of Phoenix. This time however, the fight will be taking place in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, smack dab in Pettis territory. Roufus acknowledged this saying that he actually feels bad for Henderson.
“I actually feel sorry for Ben Henderson, it’s going to be a hostile crowd,” Roufus said. “This is going to be a Montreal, Brazil type crowd. I do man, it’s going to be like fighting GSP in Montreal.”
UFC 164 will take place on August 31 at the BMO Harris Bradley Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.