No. 7-ranked UFC welterweight Hector Lombard recently dropped down a single ranking spot after Matt Brown beat Erick Silva with a rousing performance at UFC Fight Night 40, “The Immortal’s” seventh straight win inside the Octagon.
While many have been quick to jump on Brown’s bandwagon, Lombard isn’t one of those people. Undefeated at 2-0 since making the cut down to 170 pounds, the former Bellator middleweight champ recently spoke up to Submission Radio to give his view that Brown’s hype is vastly overrated due to his lack of top opposition:
“I’m mostly disappointed about how much hype Matt Brown has. I mean, he’s been fighting guys that, he never fought a top 10 guy. That’s one. And who is Erick Silva? I mean like, that’s ridiculous. I would like to fight this guy one day, and I’ll prove a point. He has to go and fight a top ten guy and go from there, because when you fight a guy like Erick Silva anybody can look good. I’d beat Erick Silva even better, even easier.
But once again, I believe Matt Brown doesn’t deserve none of that. I believe Matt Brown is just an average fighter.
How am I supposed to feel when I beat two former Strikeforce champs? It doesn’t make sense. He never beat any Strikeforce champions, he never beat any top 10 guys and he has all the hype. That’s (not) very understandable. I don’t understand that at all.
If you fight all those fighters that he fought, I would have that record as well.”
Lombard may have a good point about the legitimacy of Brown’s run. While it is no doubt impressive, it takes several top-quality wins to get a title shot in the stacked UFC welterweight division, quite possibly the most crowded weight class in MMA right now.
“Lightning’s” latest win was a decision victory over then-No. 6 Jake Shields at March 15’s UFC 171 from Dallas, Texas. That single victory gave him a bigger name victory than all of Brown’s latest victims, with No. 14-ranked “Indio” being the toughest test on paper.
You can’t take anything away from “The Immortal’s” surge through competition; he’s only fought (and destroyed) the opponents the UFC has given him. However, examining the exact statistics of the situation as Lombard has does present a new perspective.
News came earlier this week when Lombard signed on to face Dong Hyun Kim in the co-main event of August’s UFC Macau, because it seemed like a “Lightning” vs. “The Immortal” showdown was kind of a no-brainer following Brown’s recent win.
Brown could potentially face off with No.-1 ranked Robbie Lawler, who blasted Jake Ellenberger with a third round TKO at UFC 172 last Saturday (May 24, 2014), but the future is still very much up in the air.
How can Brown finally get the respect he deserves? And how far away is he from his coveted title shot?
Photo Courtesy of Fight! Australia