Former UFC welterweight champion Johny Hendricks is reportedly set to return opposite Paulo “Borrachinha” Henrique Costa on Nov. 4 at UFC 217 at Madison Square Garden in New York. The bout was first reported by Combate.
Though Hendricks (18-7) won the vacant UFC 170-pound title in 2014 by defeating Robbie Lawler, he lost it in a rematch and has since struggled to get his career back on track. Most of his Octagon struggles, however, have been exacerbated by his difficulties with the scale.
Following numerous struggles hitting the 170-pound mark and three consecutive defeats in bouts scheduled for welterweight, Hendricks made the move up to middleweight against Hector Lombard earlier this year. He hit the mark on the scale and performed well, taking a unanimous decision over Lombard.
In his most recent bout, a 185-pound contest opposite Tim Boetsch, Hendricks once again struggled with the scale. Weighing in a full two pounds over the limit, Hendricks then suffered a TKO stoppage on his home turf in Oklahoma.
Considering his continued battle with the scale, as well as having lost six of his last nine bouts, Hendricks needs a victory more than ever in New York.
He faces no easy task in doing so. Borrachinha maintains a spotless 10-0 record and has won nine of those ten bouts by way of knockout. The other victory was by way of submission.
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Hendricks will be Borrachinha’s toughest test to date, but the Brazilian is a dangerous, aggressive fighter that has only once gone beyond the first round.
UFC 217 is expected to be headlined by Georges St-Pierre‘s return to the Octagon, as he challenges middleweight champion Michael Bisping.
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