Anthony Pettis file photo: Dave Mandel | Sherdog.com
World Extreme Cagefighting lightweight champion Benson
Henderson’s next challenger appears to be Anthony
Pettis at WEC 53 on Dec.
16 at the at Jobing.com Arena in Glendale, Ariz., Sherdog.com has
learned from multiple sources with knowledge of the
The event and the headlining matchup have not yet been officially
announced by the promotion, but it is expected shortly.
Henderson, who resides in Glendale, last saw action at WEC 48 in
April, when he submitted Donald
Cerrone in under two minutes --the second time the 26-year-old
Brazilian jiu-jitsu brown belt has bested the Greg Jackson-trained
In January, Henderson submitted former champion Jamie Varner
with a third-round guillotine choke at WEC 46 to unify the
promotion’s co-existing 155-pound titles.
An avid yoga practitioner known for his considerable flexibility in
the cage, Henderson has earned six of his 13 wins with a finishing
hold and is a pristine 5-0 in the WEC cage. Henderson has been
stopped only once in his career by second-round knockout against
Klingensmith at Ring of Fire 27 in December 2006.
Pettis collected three straight victories this year in the WEC,
taking out Danny
Karalexis, and most recently, Shane
Roller via third-round submission at WEC 50 in August.
A student under famed kickboxer Duke Roufus, the Milwaukee,
Wisc.,-based Pettis also touts only one career defeat -- a split
decision loss to Bart
Palaszewski at WEC 45 last December.
Like Henderson, the 23-year-old Pettis has won multiple performance
bonuses from the promotion.