MMA fans who despise immediate rematches, rejoice!
Just a few weeks after announcing that former UFC Welterweight Champion Johny Hendricks will be facing current champ Robbie Lawler for the third straight time, the UFC had a change of heart. Instead, the werstler with elite knockut power will face Matt Brown at UFC 185.
Both fighters are coming off decision losses to Lawler. Hendricks (15-2) lost a controversial split decision last month, while Brown (19-2) lost the decision back in July 26 at UFC on FOX 12. Hendricks is coming off a 1-2 strtch with each fight being a championship bout. The bookending losses were controversial split decisions, while the win was against Lawler at UFC 171 last March.
Each fighter is still amongst the top of the Welterweight division, with Brown having won seven straight before the loss, while Hendricks has basically been on a tear throughout his career. Both fighters have knockout power, with Brown finishing 12 times in that manner, to Hendricks’ eight. However, Hendricks has the wrestling edge.
The winner of the fight will be in contention for the next Welterweight title fight. Either the winner of this fight, or that of the Rory Macdonald/Hector Lombard titl scheduled for UFC 186 will get the next shot, while the one who misses out will lilely face the winner of UFC 184’s co-main event matchup between TUF 17 winner Kelvin Gastelum and Tyron Woodley.
Regardless of whether the fight will wind up being a title eliminator or not, it is still part of a stacked card. The card features two title fights, the potential title eliminator, as well as several other intriguing bouts. Here’s the card to date, as follows.
Anthony Pettis (c) vs. Rafael dos Anjos
Carla Esparza (c) vs. Joanna Jędrzejczyk
Roy Nelson vs. Alistair Overeem
Johny Hendricks vs. Matt Brown
Chris Cariaso vs. Henry Cejudo
Sergio Pettis vs. Ryan Benoit
Ross Pearson vs. Sam Stout
Daron Cruickshank vs. Beneil Dariush
Elias Theodorou vs. Roger Narvaez
UFC 185 is scheduled to take place on March 15th, from the American Airlines Center is Dallas, Texas.