As Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Lightweight Champion Ben Henderson prepares to defend his title against Anthony Pettis at UFC 164 on Aug. 31, 2013, "Smooth" will undoubtedly have to deal with the constant reminders of the now-infamous "Showtime Kick."
In their first encounter at WEC 53, Pettis did his best "Neo" impression as he catapulted himself off the cage to deliver the kick heard 'round the world on his way to a unanimous decision victory, as well as the division title.
The dazzling move was a constant on highlight reels and will likely resurface ahead of their rematch in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Having to relive the kick may get under the skin of the reigning 155-pound champion, but John Crouch, Henderson's trainer, says it won't be a problem because it's all part of the promotional game.
In addition, the outspoken leader of The MMA Lab isn't downplaying the moves from a "super skilled" Pettis, though he does believe the epic kick was nothing but a "fluke" that took on a life of its own and somehow overshadowed Benson's efforts.
He explained on "The MMA Hour:"
"It was a fluke. It's like getting caught with a punch. I mean, all the best fighters have lost, you know what I mean? How many times has Anderson Silva seen the Ryo Chonan heel hook? How many times is he going to see Chris Weidman catching him with that hook? If you're great, if you compete with the best people in the sport, you are going to have an unfortunate moment at some point. And they're going to replay it and talk about it, but it's just another moment. It's one speck of time. There was 24 minutes and 59 seconds of that fight that still went on. The thing I remember about the 'Showtime Kick' or whatever you want to call it, is that Ben got up and was on a single leg to finish the fight. He was going to get that single. He was getting that takedown. If there's 15 more seconds, Anthony's on his back. People want to show the kick, but they don't show the rest of that round. Ben survived that, got up and began to change position at the end of the round. That's what special to me. Now, I'm Ben's guy so I'm biased."
And while Benson enjoyed home field advantage in Arizona in their first meeting, Pettis will have the chance to have his home fans chanting his name in "Brew City," something Crouch says Team Henderson is fine with.
How about it Maniacs, what's your reaction to John's labeling of the "Showtime Kick" a fluke?