Well, the UFC may not have found a replacement opponent for former heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos at UFC Fight Night 105 in Halifax, but an unexpected (and pretty exciting) middleweight match-up is the latest addition!
Johny Hendricks vs. Hector Lombard – UFC Halifax
Hendricks (17-6) will finally move up to 185 pounds after missing weight in his last two welterweight bouts. The man known as “Bigg Rigg” is a former welterweight champion who holds victories over Matt Brown, Robbie Lawler, Carlos Condit, Martin Kampmann, and Josh Koscheck. He really burst onto the scene in December of 2011 when he KO’d former title challenger Jon Fitch in 12 seconds. In 2013 after amassing a decent streak of wins, he challenged Georges St. Pierre for the title. Though he lost, he gave the longtime champ one of the toughest fights of his career. March of 2015 was the last time Hendricks had his hand raised.
Lombard (34-6-1, 2NC) is a former welterweight much like Hendricks who was just too big for the weight class. Prior to joining the UFC, Lombard was a middleweight champion in Bellator and CFC. In 2012 he made his UFC debut as a middleweight but moved to the welterweight division a year later. After wins over Nate Marquardt and Jake Shields, Lombard began to underperform, forcing him to leave the division back to middleweight in July of this year. His return to middleweight was a losing effort against Dan Henderson. Lombard enters the bout having not won since 2014.
Though Globo reported the bout as the new main event in Halifax, MMA Junkie is reporting that may not be the case. So the bouts placement on the card is currently unknown.
No bout order has been confirmed, but Canadians Elias Theodorou, Nordine Taleb, and Aiemann Zahabi will be on the card. Canada’s own Randa Markos has a massive fight against former strawweight champion Carla Esparza as well. No word on whether or not original headliner Junior Dos Santos will get a new fight after an injury to Stefan Struve.
UFC Fight Night 105 (UFC Halifax), is set to take place on February 19 at the Scotiabank Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia.