Former Bellator Middleweight Champion Hector Lombard, who recently joined the ranks of Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), was expected to earn a 185-pound title shot with a couple of wins inside the Octagon.
Turns out, he may only need one.
That's because "Lighting" strikes at the UFC on FOX 4 event from the Staples Center in Los Angeles, Calif., on Aug. 4, 2012, against hard-hitting middleweight Marine Brian Stann.
And if Lombard can lower the flag on the "All American" in the same violent fashion he's ended 24 of his 31 wins, you can expect him to become the front runner in the promotion's dwindling list of division title contenders.
That's according to UFC President Dana White, who told the mixed martial media it "makes sense" to fast-track the Cuban-born Australian if he can bolster his impressive International record with a sensational debut in the UFC.
Those comments (via MMA Fighting) after the jump.
"Yeah, it would make sense. The guy has won, I think it’s 25 fights in a row or something like that. If he comes right into the UFC, main events and knocks out Stann, it makes sense."
It would probably make even more sense if Anderson Silva was able to successfully defend his 185-pound title against Chael Sonnen (again) at UFC 148 this summer. Outside of Mark Munoz and Chris Weidman, who do battle on July 11 for their spot in the pecking order, the division is quickly running out of viable challengers.
But let's not put the cart before the proverbial horse.
Stann has been known to stiffen his share of middleweight hopefuls with his devastating power and Sonnen already proved he's got the chops to hang with the champ in a five-round fight. While the planets don't necessarily have to align to make a Silva vs. Lombard fight come to fruition, it's hardly a foregone conclusion.
But that shouldn't stop of us from picking a winner in this hypothetical match-up.
Who ya' got?