All it took was 12 seconds at UFC 141: Lesnar vs. Overeem for Johny Hendricks to steal the thunder of Jon Fitch back on Dec., 30, 2011 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The loss, preceded by a draw against B.J. Penn, was a major blow to the title aspirations of Fitch, as he was riding a five-fight win streak prior to his scrap against "The Prodigy."
The former NCAA Division-1 wrestler now finds himself in an uphill climb back to the top of the mountain as he looks to right his ship. After being paired up against fellow collegiate wrestler Aaron Simpson at UFC on Fuel TV 4, which was set to go down next month in San Jose, Jon was forced to pull out of the fight due to a knee injury he suffered during training.
But hey, what else is new, right?
The UFC has been riddled with injuries as of late and the American Kickboxing Academy (AKA) trained fighter is just one amongst many casualties the injury bug has claimed over the past few months.
Regardless of his most recent setback, Fitch is determined to get back to the top of the UFC's crowded welterweight division and he wouldn't mind doing it against a fighter he knows all too well, the aforementioned B.J. Penn. The two fought to a draw at UFC 127 on Feb., 27, 2011 in Sydney, Australia and Fitch, for one, would like to settle that score.
But he feels the "The Prodigy" doesn't want any part of him.
Make the jump to see what Fitch had to say about Penn, going as far as saying he is "ducking" him (via The MMA Hour):
"There is so many guys out there right now to fight. I just need to get a good fight against somebody, top 10 or top 15. Now that B.J. (Penn) is back, that would be fun to settle that finally, but, I don't think he wants a piece of me so he is going after young guys."
When asked if he thought "Baby J" was "ducking" him, Fitch simply stated:
"Yeah, I do."
The "young guy" Jon is referring to is none other than the ultra-talented 22-year-old Rory MacDonald, who will face Penn at UFC 152 on Sept., 22, 2012 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, which is set to go down at the Air Canada Centre. Regardless of his age, Rory is far from a pushover and will prove to be a very tough test for Penn in what will be his final fight before he rides off into the sunset.
What's your take Maniacs, who would make a good welcome back fight for Fitch once he is fully healed and ready to return to the Octagon, seeing as how a rematch against the Hawaiian scrapper is highly unlikely?