UFC 171 Odds: Hungry Hendricks as Close to Welterweight Title as Ever

Johny Hendricks came about as close as he could to winning the welterweight title without actually winning it last November, the loser of a controversial decision in Georges St-Pierre’s final fight before taking a leave of absence. Now he’s the hands-down UFC betting favorite heading into another title fight for the belt GSP vacated.

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This Saturday at UFC 171, Hendricks will take to the octagon as the -450 favorite against Robbie Lawler. While both are equals battling for the empty throne, one can’t help but empathize with Hendricks as the one who could have reasonably won the belt last November and who ought to be especially motivated to make it official this time out.

Lawler is no slouch on the MMA circuit, and a legitimate betting option with +325 UFC odds in the headlining event on the main card. If the belt is Hendricks’ to lose, then Lawler is an intriguing underdog capable of pulling the rug out from under the UFC betting community.

Is this Hendricks’ time to shine now that GSP has stepped away from the game? Did Hendricks’ punishing performance in their last bout perhaps contribute to St-Pierre choosing to take a leave of absence? Find out Saturday.