Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) middleweight maniac Hector Lombard picked up an impressive victory over Rousimar Palhares in Australia last Friday night (Dec. 14, 20012) to push his record in the continent to 21-0-1 with one "No Contest."
Lombard proved at UFC on FX 6 that he is capable of defeating UFC-caliber athletes and lived up to what fans expected from him when he was signed to the promotion earlier this year. "Lighting" has made it very public that he wants to make a run towards the middleweight title; however, defeating fighters such as Palhares is not going to get him there.
The Cuban proved worthy of a fight against a top-10 opponent with his knockout of "Toquinho" and at 35 years of age, Lombard may not have much time left to climb to the top of the ladder. Even though he called for a fight with Michael Bisping following his knockout of Palhares (see why here), a match up against the winner of Alan Belcher vs. Yushin Okami, who meet at UFC 155, would be a more suitable next step for Lombard.
Belcher is on the comeback trail from injuries while Okami is looking to rebuild himself after a two-fight skid to Anderson Silva and Tim Boetsch. Lombard vs. Belcher would be a test of both men's striking while an Okami match up would show how Lombard would deal with one of the best grapplers in the division.
Lombard vs. Belcher -- or Okami -- is a win-win for everyone involved. If Lombard wins, he picks up a victory over a top-10 middleweight and continues his quest towards a title shot. If Belcher or Okami wins, they would steal the momentum of Lombard, who before his UFC debut last July was being hyped as a future title challenger.
Considering the point all three men are at in their careers, it's hard to argue this match up doesn't make sense.
For more results and fallout from UFC on FX 6 including our live play-by-play click here.