Hector Lombard is a scary dude.
He looks like a comic book character and has the demeanor of a man who is very serious about fighting. Hurting people is his business, and business is good.
Or at least it was.
It was his business when he was in Bellator beating on guys no one cared about, or when he was wailing on regional nobodies to the tune of only two losses in his first 35 pro fights.
Then he came to the UFC, and business sort of dried up.
Lombard lost to Tim Boetsch at UFC 149 in a performance that was quite fitting of a show that many suggested was the worst in the history of the promotion. He looked tentative and listless, and had a hard time with Boestch's size and strength—something no one would have predicted prior to his debut.
Lombard will now fight closer to his adopted homeland of New Zealand—at UFC on FX 6—against Rousimar Palhares, a man of similar physical stature who is similarly without direction in the 185-pound division.
Should Lombard lose that fight—something that's a real possibility given how quickly Palhares has been known to slap on a leg lock and go home with an easy win—there may not be a place for him in the UFC.
The reality would be that Lombard would be 0-2 in the promotion. That's not flattering, and guys have been released for less.
He's also making an absurd sum of money per fight, something that was likely a by-product of the hype he came on board with.
People truly felt he was one of the best in the world at 185 pounds, and that he could easily provide a challenge for Anderson Silva.
Losses to Boetsch and Palhares certainly wouldn't support that claim.
There's also his age. At nearly 35 years old, he's entering that time in a career when a fighter shows up for work one night only to find out that he's old.
Although he'll perhaps need to be knocked out once or twice before that becomes a concrete concern, should he sit at 0-2 in the UFC, and on the wrong side of his prime, then there would be much to think about in terms of a potential release.
This isn't to say that Lombard will be released with a loss. It's not even suggesting that he's going to lose. By rights, this should be a decisive and fairly easy win for him—if he can keep all of his knee ligaments intact long enough to pound out a W.
However, if he should run into trouble, if he should get caught with something or end up losing out on the judge's scorecards, then the UFC should look long and hard at what they have in Hector Lombard.