UFC 204 emanated tonight (October 8, 2016) from the Manchester Arena in Manchester, England. The night was headlined by a grudge match between unlikely middleweight champion Michael Bisping and longtime nemesis and MMA legend Dan Henderson.

The main event was replete with storylines coming into the fight. Henderson authored one of the most brutal and memorable knockouts in the first fight between the two men at UFC 100 in July 2009. Henderson would go on to capture Strikeforce gold to add to the two Pride belts on his mantle. But a UFC championship had still eluded him.

Bisping, meanwhile, was the classic “always the bridesmaid, never the bride” of the middleweight division. That is, until the run he has been on for the last year and a half. He beat the longtime middleweight king Anderson Silva, and then stepped up on short notice to knock out champion Luke Rockhold. Bisping had already suffered a knockout loss to Rockhold in a prior meeting, but that would not stop him from finally claiming UFC gold.

As the fight played out, Bisping controlled large portions of the action with kicks and stinging combinations. But Hendo detonated the H-Bomb on Bisping’s chin in the first and second rounds, knocking down the British champion. But he failed to put him away, and that would prove costly. Bisping, as he has done throughout his career, rallied back from adversity to take rounds three and four. The final round was close, with a desperate Henderson making a late charge to seize the final round. But it proved too little, too late. Bisping escaped with a contentious split decision, his UFC championship reign intact.

The co-main event saw longtime middleweight stalwarts Gegard Mousasi and Vitor Belfort finally meet. Belfort, though, an MMA “OG” who first turned pro in 1996, was well past his prime, and it showed. “The Phenom” was good for a customary early flurry or two, but he could not keep “The Dreamcatcher” at bay. Mousasi landed a flush head kick followed by an accurate and devastating flurry that would not have been out of place in a video game. Belfort hung tough, for a time. Mousasi tripped his Brazilian foe to the canvas, easily worked to full mount, and battered Belfort relentlessly until the referee was forced to step in.

Check out Twitter’s reaction to these intriguing matchups below:

https://twitter.com/ZPGIFs/status/784961238522486784

https://twitter.com/GrabakaHitman/status/784962810094686208

https://twitter.com/SecretMovesMMA/status/784966962208239616

https://twitter.com/ZPGIFs/status/784969430556180480

https://twitter.com/SecretMovesMMA/status/784971949973893120

https://twitter.com/superCalo/status/784976298447806465

https://twitter.com/FrontRowBrian/status/784957331876421632

https://twitter.com/Cody_Nolove/status/784957495487803392

https://twitter.com/Patrick_Wyman/status/784959924547653632

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Josh found MMA in 2009 and has been an increasingly voracious consumer of the sport ever since. He started writing in January 2016, first as a blogger and then as a writer for LowKickMMA. He produces historical list pieces, occasional news coverage, opinions, and fight analysis for LK. He also co-hosts the Daily Fantasy Knockout podcast.