Veteran Robbie Lawler established himself as a true threat in the UFC’s welterweight division with a split decision win over top-five welterweight contender Rory MacDonald at UFC 167. It was an outstanding matchup in Las Vegas featuring the old guard against the new breed with “Ruthless’ securing a third straight victory. The hard-hitting Lawler, who seems to be in a perfect place at 170 pounds, has also recorded victories against victories over Josh Koscheck and Bobby Voelker
“Ares” had been hoping for a possible title shot with a sixth straight victory, but it simply wasn’t meant to be. The talented 24-year old was simply outworked by the veteran, and was in huge trouble in the final round after absorbing a solid right hand and a subsequent left hook. MacDonald made it exciting in the final seconds with a takedown and some solid elbows in the ground and pound, but it wasn’t enough in losing via split decision.
It was just his second career loss, as his only prior defeat had been a submission loss at the hands of former interim welterweight champion Carlos Condit.
MacDonald showed plenty of heart in managing to make it to the final bell against the hard-hitting Lawler as he absorbed a number of heavy shots during the course of the 15-minute affair. Lawler is clearly set up for another high-profile contest after registering the 22nd victory of his career.
Lawler continues to show that he’s a legitimate threat for any competitor in the UFC’s 170-pound division. He clearly has a puncher’s chance against anyone, and has shown a new-found maturity in his second go-around with the organization.
Rick LaFitte is an MMA Writer for Rant Sports