Former UFC Lightweight Champion Ben Henderson suffered a split decision loss to Patricky Freire in the main event of Bellator 183.
The former champion has been involved in many close fights during his career, but now he is vowing that these close fights are a thing of the past.
“I think that either way, win or lose, I need to stop having close fights,” Henderson said after the fight (via MMA Junkie.) “(People say), ‘Oh, it was kind of close, maybe you could have won, you could have lost.’ Like, those close fights are killing me. It’s always nice to win a close fight, win a close split decision, but just being in close decision, close split decision, split decision (all in a row) – those are just too close to have. You can’t have those. You have to have a better performance win or lose. You got to be in more decisive battles. It sucks.”
Henderson has had quite the poor run in the promotion, defeating Patricio Freire, but suffering defeats to Patricky Freire, Michael Chandler and Andrey Koreshkov.
Even though his defeats in Bellator MMA have all come by decision, the lightweight says that those losses are burning his soul.
“When you get to a point where you’re losing and it doesn’t hurt, it doesn’t sting and you’re like, ‘Oh, I lost another one; oh, well’ (then you should retire),” Henderson said. “This burns my soul. This does not feel good. It is burning inside. You have to learn who to deal with it. Learn how to accept it, take it like a man, and get better from it. In no way, shape or form, am I not highly upset. But I know if I tear a TV off the wall and smash it, it doesn’t do anything. It’s just all theatrics. I know on Monday I need to get back in the gym and work on getting better so I don’t have close decisions, period.”
Two of the three fights that Henderson lost were title fights against then lightweight champion Michael Chandler and then welterweight champion Andrey Koreshkov.