Benson Henderson won a close split decision that could have gone either way at Bellator 220.
Benson Henderson is a former UFC lightweight champion who seems to be finding his footing in Bellator. Henderson defended his belt three times before falling to Anthony Pettis for a second time. The MMA Lab product went 4-2 after losing the belt, then signed with Bellator after entering free agency. Henderson lost three of his first four fights with the promotion, twice by split decision, but has won in his last two appearances.
Adam Piccolotti has been with Bellator since 2015, winning his first five fights in the promotion including one against veteran Brandon Girtz. After falling to promotional staples Goiti Yamauchi and David Rickels, Piccolotti was 2-0 last year with a submission over Carrington Banks.
Adam Piccolotti controlled the first round, getting an early takedown and taking the back of Henderson. Piccolotti hunted fiendishly for a rear-naked choke, but the veteran defended well. After several minutes, Piccolotti moved to mount and tried for an arm-triangle. This gave Henderson the opportunity to escape. After standing up, Henderson pushed forward aggressively but not enough to steal the round.
Henderson landed a flying knee to start the second, the reversed a takedown attempt from Piccolotti to land in top position. Henderson then took his back, but Piccolotti shook him off. Henderson scored another takedown then escaped a guillotine attempt. Piccolotti stood up, but was caught in a standing guillotine and ate several knees to the head. Piccolotti broke free but was taken down yet again. Up and down they went. Piccolotti tried for a desperation leg lock, but it was just to kill time before the end of the round.
The final round was about as even as they come. Both men had dominant positions and submission attempts, with Piccolotti taking Henderson’s back, and Henderson gaining top position multiple times. The fight ended with Henderson in Piccolotti’s guard.
Benson Henderson def. Adam Piccolotti by Split Decision (29-28 x2, 28-29)