The co-main event of the UFC 149: "Faber vs. Barao" fight card from the Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, tonight (Sat., July 21, 2012) featured the long awaited Octagon debut of Hector Lombard in a middleweight mash up against Tim Boetsch.
With UFC President Dana White promising big news regarding the 185-pound weight class pending the result of this bout, it seemed almost certain a title shot may have been on the line coming in. That raised the stakes considerably for Lombard, who was already under a ton of pressure.
It's just too bad he laid an egg.
Through three rounds and 15 minutes, "Lightning" looked like anything but, avoiding takedowns and firing off power shots every now and again that weren't landing. By the end, the horn sounding was a saving grace from what was one of the most painful fights in recent memory. Boetsch didn't look much better.
Somewhere, Anderson Silva sits, not worried in the slightest.
Boetsch attempted to keep his distance early with kicks from the outside, and for good reason. Lombard fired off a few hard counter shots that looked like they could take Tim's head off if they landed clean.
That led to a quick takedown attempt from "The Barbarian" that "Lightning" stuffed with no problem while landing a few shots from top. He even followed up with a takedown of his own.
The pace was slow throughout the round, as Lombard clearly didn't want to blow his wad and Boetsch was weary of rushing in and getting too overzealous, knowing how much it could cost him.
The crowd was getting restless after a slow opening frame.
Round two came and after a minute and a half, it was clear the game plan remained the same. Lombard got a bit more aggressive but he was still patient as could be. No urgency on either side, actually.
Lombard finally exploded towards the end of the round but Boetsch was game. After two rounds, the pace was super slow and everyone was wondering what Lombard's problem was.
The final frame saw more of the same, neither fighter willing to go all out for the finish and both men simply firing off punches from far away and missing badly.
When it was over, Boetsch had taken it but barely.
Remember, too, to check out MMAmania.com's complete coverage of the UFC 149: "Faber vs. Barao" event by clicking here.