Although Hermes Franca and Joe Lauzon have had a very public war of words leading up to Lauzon's fight with Jeremy Stephens at UFC Fight Night 17, it's likely they'll both have different opponents before they finally get into the cage to fight one another.
Franca pulled out of the Lauzon fight due to a torn ACL, and will likely be on the sidelines for a better part of 2009 -- so a possible fight between Lauzon and Nate Diaz could take place while Franca continues to heal.
"I like Nate a lot, and I like Manny a lot," Lauzon said after his victory against Stephens. "If the UFC wants me to fight one of those guys, I'd guess probably [I'd want] more so Nate than Manny. I think a lot of people were waiting for that fight. When I was in [The Ultimate Fighter] house, I was looking forward to that fight. No one really wanted that fight. I was like, 'I'll fight Nate.' I thought he was one of the better guys in the house."
While the UFC will be able to market a fight between two talented, young fighters of the future, Franca will have surgery and patiently wait to heal up. Once he's ready to train full-time and get ready for a fight, it seems he has his sights on an old foe who beat him via unanimous decision during UFC 73 stacked in 2007.
"I would like to face Sean Sherk again, I think we have a lot of work to finish," Franca said during an interview with Tatame.
This news creates two rather interesting questions:
If a fight between Lauzon and Diaz takes place, who would you put your money on?
Once Franca recovers and is ready to fight again, would you want to see him fight Sherk again, or should he fight Lauzon?
I'd honestly rather see Franca fight Lauzon as opposed to another fight with Sherk, who I believe would be able to grind out a unanimous decision yet again. Until Franca is ready to fight again, I'd love to see the UFC make a Lauzon vs. Diaz fight take place sometime this spring or early summer.