01-Evans-Davis-UFConFox-011Former UFC light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans is very familiar with his UFC 161 opponent Dan Henderson.  He’s been a fan of him for years. 

“It is a little strange match-up because of the amount of respect I have for him and how long I’ve been following his career.  But he’s at the top of the game and throughout the years he’s proven he’s one of the best guys in the division still,” Evans said in a recent interview on Fuel TV.  “He has longevity, and he doesn’t seem to be slowing down.  So I’m going to have to slow him down on Saturday.”

In recent fights, Evans has been hesitant in his offense, something that Henderson has pointed out leading up to the fight.  But Evans has focused on changing that and believes there will be no hesitation when he faces Henderson.

“One of the thing I’ve been working on more than anything the last few months since my last fight was just becoming more confident and implementing what I’m good at and just doing what I do.  I seem to have a tendency to overthink a lot of what I’m doing when I’m out there competing.  And when you’re out there competing, thinking is the last thing you really should be doing,” he explained.

“You should just be reacting.  That’s what training is for, so you can train your body to not even think but just react.  So I’m starting to trust myself a little bit more, starting to believe in myself a little bit more, my striking and tools that I’ve got.  And I think I’m coming with a full round game this time,” added Evans.

Henderson is known for his punching power, particularly in his right hand that has been dubbed the “H-bomb.”  Evans is aware of Henderson’s knockout prowess, but he isn’t afraid of it.

“I watch it and I’ve watched it over and over again.  But for the most part, I can’t be afraid to get hit because I think at one point in the fight that I am going to get hit by it.  And I think it’s one of those things where you’re constantly paranoid that you’re going to get hit by it, you’re probably going to get hit by it harder than you think you are,” he said.

“I’m just going to go and fight.  I’ve fought a lot of guys with big right hands.  I’ve fought Rampage (Quinton Jackson).  He has a big right hand.  I’ve fought Chuck Liddell.  He has a big right hand.  So I know I can go in there and get caught by a big right hand and keep on fighting, so I’m not going to make his big right hand a big deal,” said the 33-year-old.

Evans isn’t afraid to throw down with a big puncher, but this isn’t his first rodeo either.

“With that said, I’m not going to circle to the wrong side.  I’m going to avoid it as much as possible,” he said.  “For the most part, I feel that if I get hit with a big right hand that I will be able to keep fighting.”

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