Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) welterweight champion Johny Hendricks was so worried about trying to make the 170-pound limit, after a monumental scale fail back in 2015, he was left unprepared for the size and skill of UFC Fight Night 82 opponent Stephen Thompson.
That's according to No. 2-ranked Tyron Woodley, who sliced and diced "Bigg Rigg" on Morning Wood w/Deez Nuts, which for my money, is still the greatest name for a podcast in all of mixed martial arts (MMA):
"He was weighting 174 pounds on Tuesday. That's stupid. Your body has no nutrition. You basically held your body for a week because you wanted to prove to everybody that you can make weight. The first round, he looked terrible. He looked like he was done. He looked like it was the sixth round. We've seen Johny take some hard punches. He can take a punch. This guy got hit with a back kick that hit his arm and shoulder, not even the face. His brain was dehydrated which made it easier for him to be concussed. It was sad to watch, to be honest."
Hendricks entered the bout as a -220 favorite and was promptly smoked in round one (see it).
As for Thompson, the win -- his sixth straight -- was not only the biggest of his combat sports career, but good enough to vault him into third place in the division rankings (see them here). In fact, some folks are calling for "Wonderboy" to get the next crack at the welterweight crown.
"People telling me, 'You haven't fought for a year. [Thompson] went out there and beat the No. 1 guy.' Okay, why didn't I beat the No. 1 guy? [Hendricks'] lack of commitment to the sport and that bout. Should I be penalized for that? I've been the only guy that's been professional, making weight, going out there and fighting, taking short notice fights, doing favors for the UFC. Because [Thompson] fights the person I was supposed to fight he should jump over me? That's a joke. That's kind of comical. He didn't earn a title shot, but he put himself in position. I feel like he should fight one more fight, maybe against Rory MacDonald, maybe Carlos Condit. Another long striker so we can see how he does with a striker who can deal with that. Then he's ready to roll."
Condit is coming off a razor-thin decision loss to division champion Robbie Lawler just last month, while MacDonald was finished by "Ruthless" at UFC 189.
If the promotion decides to move forward with Lawler vs. Condit 2, based on the controversy stemming from UFC 195, then Woodley vs. Thompson would make sense from a matchmaking standpoint, but that all depends on how long "The Chosen One" wants to sit on the sidelines.
After all, there are no guarantees these days.