UFC 171: Johny Hendricks is Chuck Liddell and Randy Couture rolled into one 'amazing' fighter

Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sp

Johny Hendricks has climbed to the top of the UFC welterweight division by mimicking the fighting styles of Chuck Liddell and Randy Couture and putting it all into one "amazing" total package.

Johny Hendricks has proven he can defeat his opponents in more ways than one.

If he doesn't knock you out with his power punches in the first few minutes -- or seconds -- he can use his NCAA Division-1 championship-level wrestling to control the pace of a fight and earn himself a decision victory.

It's something "Bigg Rigg" learned early on would prove to be a dangerous combination in mixed martial arts (MMA), a model he adopted by watching two of the best to every compete in the sport.

Chuck Liddel and Randy Couture.

Hendricks touched on the subject during a recent fan chat with Dallas News:

"I looked up to Chuck Liddell and Randy Couture. Two wrestlers who made it work for them. They were two completely different fighters. One was a stand-up guy, one was a control-type fighter. What I learned, if you can mesh the two, you can be amazing fighter. Control, but have the Chuck Liddell mantra to knock them out."

Indeed, Couture and Liddell earned their stripes -- and their titles -- by doing what they do best, putting people to sleep and putting them flat on their backs, repeatedly.

Two things Hendricks is very, very good at it.

And he'll have to bring all of his tools with him when he faces "Ruthless" Robbie Lawler on Mar. 15, 2014, in Dallas, Texas, at UFC 171, if he wants to win the welterweight title that was vacated by former division champion Georges St-Pierre.

But even then, will it be enough to topple a resurgent Lawler?

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