Former UFC Lightweight Champ Benson Henderson signs with Bellator

Former UFC Lightweight Champion and current #13 ranked welterweight "Smooth" Benson Henderson has officially signed with Bellator MMA, after fighting out his contract with the UFC.
Josh Hedges|Zuffa LLC|Zuffa LLC

Josh Hedges|Zuffa LLC|Zuffa LLC

Henderson announced the news on his official website. Henderson (23-5 MMA, 11-3 UFC) is currently riding a two fight win streak with wins over Brandon Thatch in his welterweight debut and a split decision win over Jorge Masvidal in the main event of UFC Fight Night 79. Days before his fight against Masvidal in Seoul, it was reported that Henderson only had one fight left on his UFC contract. After the fight, the former champion confirmed that. It was speculated that Henderson may leave the promotion in search of a title or just more money, and he has officially left the UFC now. "I'm beyond excited for this next phase of my career, it's a big move" wrote Henderson as he announced the news on his website. Although he didn't sign a new contract, Henderson left the UFC on good terms, and thanked the promotion and everybody running it for a great few years in his career, "I'd be remiss to not thank Dana White and Lorenzo Fertita for the opportunities they presented me" said Henderson before expressing his gratitude for how much the UFC have helped him,  "you guys have helped me change my life for the better and to be able to provide my family with the things I didn't have while growing up. For that I'll always have the utmost appreciation. Thanks for all the advise you guys gave too, both business wise and personal." "Smooth" also thanked everybody behind the scenes at the UFC, "last but not least, to who it is I think of when I think of the UFC! Everybody behind the scenes who I personally dealt with every time I reported in or had to do something. Mayra, Melissa, Dave, Chris, Nick, Tracy, Joanie, Maura, Tony, Heidi, Ryan, James, Dave, Kaia (sp.???), Burt, Rob, Rudy, Stitch, House, Mike, Susie, Dean, Donna, Feryal, Sean, Joe, Brad, Jazzmine, Candice, Michelle, Reed, sorry I can't name everyone or this list would go on for forever." It is still unsure what weight class Benson Henderson will be fighting at under Bellator MMA.

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