A former UFC lightweight champion is making a major move -- and helping out the UFC in a pinch.
Benson Henderson will go up to welterweight and meet Brandon Thatch in the main event of UFC Fight Night 60 in two weeks, on Feb. 14 in Broomfield, Colo, it was announced Saturday night on FOX Sports 1 after UFC 183. Henderson is coming off a loss to Donald Cerrone just two weeks ago at UFC Fight Night: McGregor vs. Siver on Jan. 18.
Henderson (21-5) has thought about making the move up for the last few months and told MMAFighting.com before the Cerrone fight that he would be fine with bouncing back and forth between the two weight classes provided the fights are right. "Smooth" is doing the UFC a huge favor coming in on short notice. Thatch was supposed to meet Stephen Thompson in the Colorado main event before Thompson injured his ribs this week.
In Thatch (11-1), Henderson will have a more-than-game opponent. The top prospect has been out since November 2013 with a myriad of injuries, but he has some of the most electric striking in the welterweight division. Thatch, 29, has finished both of his UFC fights and all but one fight in his entire career.
The UFC Fight Night 60 main event was initially supposed to be Matt Brown vs. Tarec Saffiedine, but Saffiedine got hurt and Brown was moved to UFC 185 to take on Johny Hendricks. The co-headliner will be a featherweight matchup between Max Holloway and Cole Miller.