Johny Hendricks won’t be completing his trilogy of title fights with Robbie Lawler after all – or at least not right away, despite the rematch being confirmed just a couple of weeks ago.
Instead the UFC has made an unexpected announcement that Hendricks will now fight Matt Brown in the co-main event of UFC 185 on March 14th instead.
Brown had also been previously attached to a headliner at UFC Fight Night 60 on February 14th opposite Tarec Saffiedine, but had been awaiting a new opponent after ‘The Sponge’ pulled out due to an injury.
‘The Immortal’ is coming off his first loss since a remarkable seven fight winning streak that saw him get within touching distance of a title shot. That defeat came against the new champion of the welterweight division Robbie Lawler in a title eliminator match-up at UFC On FOX 12 back in July of last year.
Slipping down to No.6 in the rankings in the process Brown’s title aspirations appeared to be fading, but a major fight with Hendricks offers him a chance to get right back into contention.
It’s undoubtedly a tough match-up for him though against ‘Big Rig’ though who shares something in common with his opponent in that he too is coming off a decision loss to Lawler.
Hendricks also has a somewhat controversial loss to former long-time divisional kingpin George St.Pierre on his recent record, but that aside he’s defeated most of the divisions top talents in recent years and will be keen to do the same to Brown and get back to fighting for the belt.
So, UFC 185 has now been strengthened with the addition of Hendricks Vs Brown, an event which remains headlined by a lightweight title encounter between Anthony Pettis and Rafael dos Anjos.
Meanwhile, with Brown’s switch to fighting a month later UFC Fight Night 60 now goes ahead with a new main event between Brandon Thatch and Stephen ‘Wonderboy’ Thompson.