A fighter is a product of the era in which they came to prominence, and as the sport and its viable strategies continue to evolve, older generations of fighters find themselves cannibalized by tomorrow’s champions.
In the second round, he would succumb to Henderson’s gruesome right hand and a follow-up forearm shot to his unconscious body, in what would become one of the most famous knockouts in UFC history, forever emblazoned for posterity on Henderson’s logo.
One of the sport’s hardest hitters, he has come to rely on this power more and more as his other physical gifts have deteriorated with age.
The knockout came swiftly afterwards, as Lombard braced for a kick to the body, and instead received a thudding shin, colliding directly with his skull.
That such a fight should be contested for the most important prize in mixed martial arts can be attributed largely to the immense grit and audacious defiance of two of the sport’s most unflappable figures.