The Phantom Menace: What do we know about Hector Lombard?Posted on July 18, 2012, 05:20 PM by Anton Gurevich
This weekend, Hector “Shango” Lombard will finally make his Octagon debut, facing Tim Boetsch in the co-main event action at UFC 149. At the age of 34, Hector Lombard has proved himself as one of the most dangerous 185’ers on the planet, with 17 KO/TKO and 7 Submission victories.
Lombard spent the majority of his career in Australia, before making a move to Bellator. The Cuban-Australian heavy hitter won the inaugural Bellator Middleweight Tournament with a victory over Jared Hess, and defended his title against Alexander Shlemenko. Lombard went 8-0 in Bellator, with 7 KO/TKO finishes.
Shango is still enigma to many MMA fans around the world. Other than Shlemenko, no one was really able to challenge Lombard in Bellator. Catchweight and Non-title affairs proved to be a waste of time for Lombard, who steamrolled through anything Bellator had to offer. At least on paper, Tim Boetsch has what it takes to become a real test for Hector Lombard in his first UFC experience.
Before he steps inside the Octagon, here are three of Hector Lombard’s fights in Bellator that could indicate on his chances to become a title contender in the UFC. Do you have more? Make sure to leave your suggestions in the comment section below.
“Storm” Shlemenko was Hector Lombard’s toughest test in Bellator. The stubborn Russian is one of the most exciting Middleweights in Mixed Martial Arts today, with strong striking skills and constantly-improving wrestling skills. Shlemenko took the fight to Lombard, and was punished by the Cuban-Australian during the first 3 rounds. However, in the championship rounds, Shlemenko was clearly the better fighter, taking advantage of his opponent’s poor conditioning. Lombard was still able to take Shlemenko down at will, but the Siberian KO artist was way more aggressive on his feet. This fight showed that once Hector Lombard faces someone who can withstand his power, he gets frustrated, and struggles to dominate. Luckily for Lombard, he has TNT in his hands.
Winning the inaugural Bellator Middleweight title was by far the biggest achievement in Hector Lombard’s career. Shango KO’d his way into the Bellator Middleweight Tournament finale bout with Jared Hess. Fresh off three consecutive KO victories in Round 1, Lombard was dragged into Round 4 by Hess, before the inevitable doctor stoppage due to cuts. Lombard is only 5ft 9in tall, while Hess is 6ft even, with a reasonable reach advantage. Lombard is smaller than majority of middleweights in the UFC, therefore it will be interesting to see if he will be able to physically dominate his opponents inside the Octagon, in the same way he did with Jared Hess.
Hector Lombard’s finish against Falaniko Vitale at Bellator 44 is without exaggeration one of the best knockouts I’ve seen in my life. While Falaniko Vitalo is far from being a Top 10 Middleweight, he’s an experienced fighter with a good record. Lombard dominated Vitale in the first two rounds, before finishing the fight with a thunderous right hook. Vitale was knocked out his feet, standing up and then falling again, in what was Lombard’s 16th KO/TKO finish. This is a perfect example of how dangerous Hector Lombard is on his feet. Similar to Anderson Silva, Lombard can finish the fight in any given moment.