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Michael Chandler outlasts Benson Henderson in instant classic at Bellator 165

Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) lightweight kingpin Benson Henderson finally got his opportunity to fight current Bellator MMA 155-pound champion Michael Chandler last night (Sat., Nov. 19, 2016) at Bellator 165 live on Spike TV from inside SAP Center in San Jose, California. It marked Henderson's second Bellator title shot since coming over from UFC earlier this year and Chandler's first title defense since recapturing the belt this past June.

After a first round that favored the champion's countless power strikes against the cage, near fight-ending submission attempts and impressive suplex ability, Henderson began find his groove and tag Chandler on the feet. While "Smooth" would threaten with a late rear-naked choke attempt in the fifth round, Chandler did more than enough through the course of the fight with his chest-to-chest pressure, ground positioning, escapes and total damage landed. The champ retains his title to the tune of a split decision.

The full video highlights can be seen above courtesy of ESPN.

With this win, Chandler reaffirms his position as the best fighter under Bellator rule. Henderson is still one of the very best lightweights in the world, so it's quite the feather in the cap of the champ. He'll take on all suitors in 2017.