With the prospect of a light heavyweight championship fight hanging in the balance, Dan Henderson and Lyoto Machida walked to the cage tonight (Feb. 23, 2013) at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California, eager to make their mark and not just earn the shot but take it.
Round three brought a sense of urgency from both men, as Henderson knew he needed to land clean to finally establish his offense while Machida's game plan remained solid.
After about a minute, "Hendo" earned his first takedown of the bout, tripping "The Dragon" to the floor and landing in his full guard. He didn't do a whole lot with it at first, expelling a lot of his energy simply trying to shift himself up to land a few elbows.
Machida made it hard on him, thoug, and finally the referee called for Henderson to advance position or he would stand them up. It didn't matter anyway, seeing as Lyoto got himself out of his predicament just seconds later.
With just one minute left, the two were locked in what amounted to a staredown as they circled each other looking for any opening that may present itself to end the fight with one perfectly placed shot.
Machida was the only one to land in this situation, with two hard kicks slapping against Henderson's skin. The horn sounded and it seemed "The Dragon" had done enough but would the judges agree?