Lombard claims injury prior to UFC debut; sidelined for six weeks

There was a lot of expectation and hype surrounding former Bellator middleweight champion Hector Lombard (31-3-1, 1 NC) as he made his UFC debut against Tim Boetsch at UFC 149 last month. The Cuban judo black belt came into the fight riding a remarkable 24-fight win streak, having not lost a bout since 2006.

However, as the fight wore on, it became apparent this was not the same fighter Lombard fans were accustomed to seeing. The 34-year-old American Top Team product did little more than stand in the center of the Octagon and look for the big counter KO punch, and it just never came. The bout ended up going all three rounds with Boetsch earning the split decision victory.

There were those who were critical of the coaching Lombard received between rounds. Others hypothesized maybe the bright lights of the UFC played a role or that Boetsch was just that much better than Lombard. But now Lombard has released a statement on his Facebook account that he was actually injured going into the fight:

“I want to let all my fans know. I fought mu [sic] last fight injured. i wasnt 100% sure but i when to the doctors… I have a fracture sternum with a torn cartilage, i got this injure in training for my fight with Tim Boetsch. I have to be out of training for 6weeks i should never have fought like that, but i didnt want to let my fans and the UFC down, love you all.”