The UFC 171 will serve as a firm signal that the UFC welterweight division is in a healthy state after the retirement of Georges St Pierre, with a new champion in Johny Hendricks and several new fighters muscling their way into the top contender spots with stand out performances. Tyron Woodley staked his case to be top dog by taking out previous #1 contender Carlos Condit, and Hector Lombard looked relentless against Jake Shields in a three round UD. Both men will be staking their cases for a title shot at Hendricks in their next outing, but did wither do enough?
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Of the two, Woodley is probably closest to the next title shot. Taking out Carlos Condit is no small feat, and Woodley looked very solid in delivering the win. Woodley also has a KO over Josh Koschek to now go 2-0 since he lost to Jake Shields. In that fight, Shields was able to smother Woodley, and Woodley failed to step up and win. This fight against Condit was also a step up fight for Woodley, and he passed the test.
Lombard however, took out Shields who was on a four fight winning streak that included Woodley. Lombard was not able to finish Shields, but he was able to dominate Shields over 3 rounds like no one else has. Lombard is over 35 years old, so his age makes a fast track to a title shot likely if they want to get the most effective Lombard possible into the title picture.
Both men appeared to come out of this fight healthy, and both will have backers for being the next shot at Hendricks. Here is a scenario I would bet. Lombard gets the next shot at Hendricks, making the most intriguing match available right now. this leaves Woodley with a top contender match against Rory MacDonald to determine who will be the nxt challenger in front of the welterweight champion in the post GSP era.