Former interim UFC welterweight champion Carlos Condit will now face Johny Hendricks in the co-main event of UFC 158: St-Pierre vs. Diaz. His original opponent, Rory MacDonald, suffered a training injury and was forced out of the March fight.
Condit, who lost to Georges St-Pierre late in 2012 in a bout to unify the UFC titles, was filled with mixed emotions following news of the change.
“While I was disappointed to hear that Rory MacDonald is injured, I am glad that the UFC was able to find a strong replacement for the fight in Johny Hendricks,” said Condit, in an official statement sent to Rebellion Media. “He is one of the toughest welterweights in the world, and has quickly risen up the ladder in our division. We are similar in that we like to stay active and aggressive in our fights, so this should be a great fight for the fans to watch.”
The bout could help determine the next contender to the belt, which will be on the line in the main event when GSP faces Nick Diaz. Hendricks was scheduled to meet Jake Ellenberger, who is still waiting for a new opponent.
As for Condit, the change in opponents will force him to make some adjustments in training. With nearly two months left before the fight, though, he believes he has time to do that.
“I will need every moment to be fully prepared for this battle,” Condit said. “He’s called me out in the past, and now is his chance to try to back that talk up. I’ll be ready for him.”