A really explosive suplex is right up there with a spectacular KO in terms of creating excitement among MMA fans and on Saturday night in San Jose, California, Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler delivered one of the most outrageous suplexes you are likely to see.
Chandler broke out the manoeuvre at the midway point of what was a big first round for him against former UFC lightweight kingpin Benson Henderson at Bellator 165. How Henderson popped back up and continued to battle for another four and a half rounds we will never know.
— Fury's Fight Picks (@FurysFightPicks) November 20, 2016
Folks, this one is up there with the best of them, although it still fails to surpass the brutal beauty of the most famous suplex in MMA history – the late Kevin Randleman’s manhandling of Fedor Emelianenko at Pride Critical Countdown 2004.
Henderson fought back valiantly after being dumped oh so unceremoniously on his neck, but it wasn’t enough to convince a majority of the judges that he deserved to be crowned champion. Though one official gave the fight to ‘Bendo’ by a score of 48-46, the other two judges over-ruled him, handing in scorecards of 48-46 and 48-47 to give Chandler the split decision victory.
It was Henderson’s second unsuccessful challenge for a Bellator title in just three fights with the company, having lost a wide unanimous decision to then welterweight champion Andrey Koreshkov on his promotional debut back in April.
It was Chandler’s third successful defence of the Bellator lightweight title, but the first of this his second reign as champion.
Elsewhere at Bellator 165, the much-hyped Michael Page scored a split decision victory over Fernando Gonzalez and Kimbo Slice’s son, Kevin Ferguson Jr., was submitted by Aaron Hamilton on his professional MMA debut.