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UFC Fight Night 82 results recap: Johny Hendricks vs Stephen Thompson fight review and analysis

Last night (Sat., Feb. 6, 2016), Johny Hendricks and Stephen Thompson came to blows at UFC Fight Night 82 inside MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. In a stellar performance, Thompson knocked his opponent out. Find out how below!

Joshua Dahl-USA TODAY Sports

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) top-ranked Welterweights Johny Hendricks and Stephen Thompson clashed last night (Feb. 6, 2016) at UFC Fight Night 82 inside MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Despite coming off a victory, Hendricks really needed a strong performance here to remind fans of his talent. Scale fails and time off did not leave the former champion in great position, so he needed to reinsert himself into the title picture with a victory here.

On the other hand, Thompson entered this bout on the heels of a lengthy win streak with a fair bit of momentum behind him. By taking out "Big Rigg," Thompson could earn the biggest win of his career and put himself in good position to earn a title shot.

He did just that.

To watch Johny Hendricks vs. Stephen Thompson full fight video highlights from UFC Fight Night 82 last night click here.

Hendricks wasted little time in closing the distance and forcing his opponent into the fence. However, Thompson managed to break away, land some strong kicks from range, and scored with a hard combination of punches.

For the next couple minutes, Thompson picked his opponent apart with vicious combinations and counter punches. Hendricks never picked up his urgency, which allowed his opponent to land at a ridiculously high clip.

After getting picked apart, Hendricks looked to lunge with his usual overhand and was countered with a sharp left. As he came up out of his dip, "Wonderboy" scored with a second cross that sent Hendricks wobbling into the fence. From there, Thompson violently let loose with a flurry of punches and kicks, which caused his foe to slump down to the mat near the end of the first round.


In the biggest fight of his career, Thompson fought incredibly well. He did a spectacular job maintaining his distance and picking at his opponent whenever he tried to close range, really stymieing his opponent's offense.

This is an example of everything going right for a fight. Thompson did an excellent job sticking to his game plan and stabbing at his opponent with long range strikes. Then, Thompson would angle off before Hendricks could return with more pressure and try to move him into the fence.

Furthermore, Thompson did an excellent job choosing when to really commit to his power shots. Sometimes, he would simply touch his opponent with counter punches. This allowed him to surprise Hendricks when he really did commit to the hard shot, badly hurting the champion.

Following this loss, Thompson is now one of the top choices for the next title shot. Frankly, him, Tyron Woodley, and Demian Maia all have strong arguments for a title shot, so it really could go any different way.

Regardless, "Wonderboy" is now a top five fighter.

While everything went perfectly for Thompson, a combination of mistakes and prior flaws really caught up to Hendricks last night. This was a worst-case scenario for "Big Rigg," and it resulted in his first truly definitive loss in many years.

Early on, things appeared to be going well for Hendricks, as he secured the clinch without issue and put himself in good position to finish a takedown. Thompson managed to wiggle free, but overall that exchange did favor Hendricks.

Rather than look to force more grappling exchanges, Hendricks simply walked towards his opponent. He did this without any real feints, offensive threats, or attempts to cut off the cage. Basically, Hendricks put himself in his opponent's wheelhouse and suffered the consequences.

After getting touched with a few hard shots, Hendricks should've realized his situation and upped the urgency to close the distance. Sure, that may have walked him into a counter knockout punch as well, but it also gave him a chance at working his game. Instead, Hendricks continuously absorbed nasty shots for two straight minutes.

That's simply not sustainable, even with a great chin.

Following this loss, it's not clear where Hendricks goes from here. Personally, I think a rematch with Rick Story would be an interesting match up that would make sense from a rankings perspective.

Last night, Stephen Thompson violently knocked out Johny Hendricks inside a round. Can "Wonderboy" become a UFC champion?

For complete UFC Fight Night 82: "Hendricks vs Thompson" results and play-by-play, click HERE!

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