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Monday Morning Hangover: Is it time for Hector Lombard to retire following UFC Sao Paulo?

Another weekend of fisticuffs has come and gone as UFC Fight Night 137 blew the roof off Ibirapuera Gymnasium last Saturday night (Sept. 22, 2018) in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Plenty of fighters were left licking their wounds, including Eryk Anders, who was beat down by Thiago Santos to the point where he couldn’t answer the bell for the fourth round, collapsing twice in between frames in what was a truly scary scene (see it again here).

And Sam Alvey, who was knocked out by Antonio Rogerio Nogueira in the second round of their Light Heavyweight showdown (highlights). But which fighter is suffering from the worst post-fight hangover, now 48 hours removed from the show?

Hector Lombard.

Going into his fight against Thales Leites — which was relegated to the Fight Pass preliminary portion of the event — Hector was looking to snap a horrendous five-fight losing streak in an attempt to hang on to his UFC employment.

Better luck next time.

Lombard and Leites engaged in a decent scrap throughout the course of their 15 minutes, but in the end, the judges awarded the Brazilian a unanimous decision win, sending him off into retirement on a victory and a high note.

For Lombard, it’s anything but.

That’s now six straight defeats for “Showeather,” who hasn’t tasted victory since 2014. He did outlast Josh Burkman at UFC 182 back in 2015, but that fight was overturned to a no-contest after the Cuban failed a drug test for steroids.

After that, Lombard went on to lose to Neil Magny, Dan Henderson, Johny Hendricks, Anthony Smith, CB Dolloway, and now Leites. Granted, a lot of those fighters are heavy-hitters, but a loss is a loss, anyway you slice it.

It’s hard to fathom how the once-mighty Lombard (34-10-1, 2 NC) could own such a streak, as he was once considered one of the best fighters in all of MMA. But that was before he jumped ship from Bellator to UFC. Prior to joining the Endeavor-owned promotion, Lombard won 24 straight, including all eight fights for Bellator, which were good enough to earn him the Middleweight title.

But since he’s been with UFC, he’s won just three fights in 12 attempts. That’s not exactly the run many — Lombard included — expected. Where it went wrong is anybody’s guess, but Hector simply doesn’t look and perform like the same fighter that instilled fear in his past opponents.

Not even close.

Where Lombard, now 40, goes from here is hard to predict, as I don’t think there has ever been a time where a fighter lost six in a row and kept his/her spot on the UFC roster. It would be very hard justify that with so much available talent out there.

There have been a select few who survived the chopping block after a bad losing streak, such as Andrei Arlovski, who was given multiple chances after he endured a five-fight skid. So there is (slight) hope for Lombard.

Should Hector get another crack inside the Octagon, perhaps a showdown against someone like Dan Kelly is in order. The aging Aussie has been on a rough stretch as of late, as well, losing three in a row, the next worst losing streak in the division.

Unfortunately, in the case of Lombard, there is little we can do besides throw stuff at the wall to see what sticks, so if you have a better idea, feel free to share it in the comments section below.

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