Although Johny Hendricks campaigned tirelessly for a title shot, and defeated Matt Brown in March, Hector Lombard says he knows why “Bigg Rigg” wasn’t tapped for a title shot.
After Hendricks lost the welterweight title to Robbie Lawler last December, everyone and their dog thought a rubber match with the new champ would come next. Lawler, however, elected to take a break and Hendricks opted to fight Brown. The idea being, of course, that a win over “The Immortal” would secure him a third fight with Lawler.
Well, that didn’t end up being the case, as the UFC has booked Carlos Condit to fight Lawler next. Originally, the two were going to fight on November 14th in Australia, but a thumb injury to Lawler pushed the bout to January 2nd (in Las Vegas).
Recently Lawler’s ATT teammate, Hector Lombard, appeared on “Submission Radio“. While discussing the fact that Hendricks was passed over for a title shot, Lombard said this (quote via Bloody Elbow.com):
“Remember, at the end of the day this is entertainment,” Lombard said. “If you’re just gonna be a blanket, no one wants to [see you fight], especially the Australian card. Australians, they want to see the toughness. It’s such a big event. They don’t want to see a blanket.”
“And he did it after with the other fight [Matt Brown]. He’s just a blanket.”
Now sure, a lot of people wouldn’t characterize Hendricks as a “blanket” just yet, as it wasn’t that long ago when he was bombing out dudes like Jon Fitch and Martin Kampmann. But, in his last few outings, Hendricks has been turning to his vaunted wrestling game a lot, and this is likely why most fans weren’t screaming for Lawler-Hendricks III at this juncture.
Title shots aside, Hendricks is scheduled to fight Tyron Woodley at UFC 192 on October 3rd. Lombard, meanwhile, is suspended until next January after failing his post-fight drug test at UFC 183. Lombard decisioned Josh Burkman at the event, but the result was overturned to a no contest.