The current UFC record for successful title defenses belongs to former middleweight champion Anderson Silva at 10, but lightweight champ Benson Henderson plans to beat that mark and he already has a time frame in which he plans to do so.
Henderson will be taking some time off to get married to his fiancee, Maria Magana, who he proposed to after his win against Gilbert Melendez in April, but he still plans to earn the record in 2016.
“I’m going to break it in 2016,” Henderson said without hesitation, via MMA Fighting.
“I should be able to break it by 2015, but because I’m getting married I’m going to take some time off for my honeymoon. That’s going to set me back by about three to four months. But I have it down exactly. I know when I’m going to break it. It’s going to be early 2016. I know what number I need to get. I know the amount of hard work it’s going to take for me to get there. I know how much I’ve got to get beat up, I know how much I’ve got to practice. I’m aware of it. I know it. Now my goal is to go out there and go do it.”
Of course, first Henderson will have to get past Anthony Pettis at this weekend’s UFC 164.
If he gets passed Pettis, Henderson’s defense streak will be at four — still a long way from the record. However, if he avoids injury against Pettis, he could return early in 2014 and rack up three title defenses if all goes according to plan. That would set him up with four more defenses to go and just over a year to do it.
The record could certainly be in Henderson’s reach if he continues to dominate opponents, but he will need for so much to fall perfectly in to place.