On Saturday, Oct. 8, the UFC hosted UFC 204: Bisping vs. Henderson 2 from the Manchester Arena in Manchester, England.
In the night’s main event, UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping looked to defend the title for the first time in his hometown. The 37-year-old was out for revenge as he rematched MMA legend Dan Henderson. The pair met previously at UFC 100 in 2009 following their coaching stint on The Ultimate Fighter. Henderson scored a highlight-reel knockout of the Brit in the second round.
Bisping rode the momentum of four straight wins into the title contest, including a first-round stoppage of Luke Rockhold that earned him the belt earlier this year. Henderson, meanwhile, looked to add the final piece of hardware to his collection that includes titles in Pride FC and Strikeforce.
The co-main event featured former UFC champion Vitor Belfort against former Strikeforce titleholder Gegard Mousasi.
The 11-fight event kicked off Saturday at 7 p.m. ET with two fights streaming on UFC Fight Pass. Four additional preliminary card bouts followed at 8 p.m. ET on Fox Sports 1, with the five-fight main card airing live on pay-per-view at 10 p.m. ET.
In a rematch seven years in the making, Michael Bisping and Dan Henderson put on a show for the ages. Bisping marched forward throwing punches at range and the occasional lead head kick. Henderson stayed on the outside before uncorking his patented overhand right and sending Bisping to the mat just like their first meeting. Henderson flurried with punches and elbows from the top position, but Bisping was able to survive. Round two saw Bisping increase his output, frequently landing head kicks and right hands. Late in the round, Henderson again landed his right hand and Bisping crashed to the canvas again. Henderson’s pace slowed in the third round, as Bisping scored from range. It was more of the same in round four, but Henderson began coming forward late in the round. The final frame was close throughout, as Henderson threw combinations and earned a takedown. It wasn’t enough, however, as Bisping earned the decision win and retained his title.
The co-main event featured a dominant display of striking from middleweight Gegard Mousasi. The Dutchman stopped former champion Vitor Belfort by second-round TKO. Mousasi came forward throughout the opening round, forcing Belfort to put his back to the fence. Belfort countered a kick with a heavy left hand, but otherwise it was all Mousasi thanks to his patient striking attack. In round two, Mousasi baited Belfort into a massive head kick and flurried with punches. Belfort fell to the ground, but tried to survive. Mousasi mounted him and delivered a barrage of punches and elbows that forced the referee to halt the contest.
Light heavyweight Jimi Manuwa survived a tough first round to score a violent, second-round knockout of Ovince Saint Preux. The pair traded kicks to open the bout, but Manuwa frequently initiated the clinch. That allowed OSP to take the fight to the ground. He transitioned to Manuwa’s back, but was unable to secure a submission. In the second round, Manuwa found his range on the feet. He battered OSP with heavy kicks before unloading with his hands. An overhand right rocked Saint Preux and a follow-up left hook sent him crashing to the ground unconscious.
Heavyweight Stefan Struve used his significant height and reach advantage to defeat Daniel Omielanczuk. Omielanczuk struggled to get inside, but once he did, Struve used a judo trip to put him on his back. Struve transitioned to mount, and then to the back of Omielanczuk. Omielanczuk defended well in the first round, but when the pair hit the ground in the same manner in round two, Struve quickly went for the neck. Struve sunk in a D’arce choke along the cage and Omielanczuk was forced to tap.
Returning from a lengthy injury layoff, featherweight Mirsad Bektic made short work of late-notice opponent Russell Doane. Bektic was crisp with his punches before scoring a big takedown. He then transitioned to Doane’s back along the cage. Doane defended Bektic’s submission attempts initially, but Bektic secured a body-triangle and locked in a rear-naked choke to get the finish.
Brazilian Iuri Alcantara put on a dominant display to close out the preliminary card with a submission win over Brad Pickett. Alcantara was aggressive with his striking attack, catching Pickett with a knee along the fence and then a standing back elbow. A pair of follow-up punches sent Pickett to the canvas and Alcantara flurried to finish. Pickett somehow survived, but Alcantara attacked with a triangle choke. Pickett escaped, but Alcantara transitioned to an armbar and then back to the triangle. It was too much for Pickett, who was forced to submit.
Bantamweight Damian Stasiak overcame two tough rounds to score a thrilling, third-round armbar finish of Davey Grant. Grant used his size to overpower Stasiak early. Grant’s takedowns were frequent and his scored with combination after combination on the feet. Late in the second round, Stasiak swept to the top and mounted Grant. That was a precursor of what would happen in round three. Grant again took the fight to the ground, but Stasiak locked onto a deep armbar and cranked on Grant’s arm until he tapped.
Leon Edwards used his superior grappling abilities to submit opponent Albert Tumenov via rear-naked choke. Edwards quickly took Tumenov to the ground in the opening frame. The tide turned in the second stanza as Tumenov stayed upright and battered Edwards with combination after combination. Edwards was patient in round three, earning another takedown and taking the back of the Russian. Once there, Edwards applied the fight-finishing choke and coerced the tap.
Making his UFC debut, Marc Diakiese topped Lukasz Sajewski by second-round TKO. Diakiese was overly aggressive early, allowing Sajewski to take him to the ground. Diakiese worked back to his feet and violently slammed Sajewski. It wasn’t long, however before Sajewski again earned a takedown. The pace of the Polish fighter slowed significantly in round two as Diakiese increased his pressure and striking volume. He backed Sajewski against the cage and teed off, forcing the referee to intervene.
Mike Perry remained undefeated, scoring a third-round knockout of Danny Roberts in an action-filled battle. Perry pushed the pace from the opening bell, while Roberts countered with kicks. Perry’s pressure paid off multiple times as he rocked Roberts and gained top position on the ground. As the fight progressed, the kicks of Roberts paid off as Perry slowed. It wasn’t enough, however, as Perry landed a heavy right hand in the waning moments of the fight, sending an unconscious Roberts crashing to the mat.
TUF Brazil winner Leonardo Santos eked out a split decision win over countryman Adriano Martins in a slow-paced affair to open the event. The pair traded single strikes throughout the course of three rounds, with Santos doing just enough to earn the victory on the scorecards.