Benson Henderson had the opportunity to take up a career in law enforcement.

However, that didn’t completely fill the desire that fueled “Smooth,” so he entered into MMA.

Now, after becoming the UFC lightweight champion, Henderson believes he made the right decision.

On Saturday, August 11, Henderson will defend his title against the man he took the belt from earlier this year, Frankie Edgar, at UFC 150. The two were on hand for a kickoff press conference Tuesday in Denver.

“It meant a lot, on a lot of different levels,” said Henderson, of winning the UFC title. “It validated my choice. I was gonna be a cop here in Denver, (but winning the title) validated that I made a good choice. It still hasn’t fully hit me. It hits me a bit more every day.”

Henderson will have the backing of several friends and family members, as he was born in nearby Colorado Springs. He said fighting in Colorado, “gets me pumped. I’m excited. I will feed off you guys.”

Photo credit: Esther Lin/MMA Fighting