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UFC 195 fight card primer: Robbie Lawler vs. Carlos Condit

Bloody Elbow presents a preview of UFC 195: Lawler vs. Condit in our fight card primer series. Here we look at the main event: Robbie Lawler vs. Carlos Condit for the UFC Welterweight title.

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

In the main event at UFC 195: Lawler vs. Condit, UFC Welterweight champion Robbie Lawler (26-10(1) MMA; 11-4 UFC) takes on challenger Carlos Condit (30-8 MMA; 7-4 UFC). This five round title fight caps off the five fight UFC 195 PPV main card. The UFC rankings have Condit as the #4 contender in the division, with champion Lawler ranked at #6 on the Pound for Pound list. UFC 195: Lawler vs. Condit airs live from Las Vegas this Saturday, January 2. The main card airs on PPV with a fight time of 10:00 p.m. ET / 7:00 p.m. PT, with the prelims starting at  8:00 p.m. ET on Fox Sports 1 and 6:30 p.m. ET on Fight Pass.

To kick off 2016, the UFC has chosen two of their most crowd-pleasing fighters and created a fight that is virtually guaranteed to be a war. Both Lawler and Condit have achieved a cult status amongst many MMA fans, and that status comes from both men's willingness to go all out and do whatever it takes to win. Pair them up, and you have not only a huge title fight, but also a possible very early and very strong candidate for Fight of the Year.

How do these two stack up?

Lawler: 33 years old | 5'11" | 74" reach
Condit: 31 years old | 6'2" | 76" reach

What have these two done recently?

Lawler: W - Rory MacDonald (TKO) | W - Johny Hendricks (SD) | W - Matt Brown (UD)
Condit: W - Thiago Alves (TKO) | L - Tyron Woodley (TKO) | W - Martin Kampmann (TKO)

How did these two get here?

"Ruthless" Robbie Lawler gets here through one of the longest paths to UFC title gold. Making his MMA debut in 2001, Lawler has gone from super hyped blue-chip prospect, to UFC washout and exile, to world champion (but not in the UFC), to aging and done veteran, to UFC world champion. It's been a long wild ride, and the amazing thing is, it doesn't appear to be close to over. Now nearing the 15 year mark in his pro career, Lawler has long passed the point when most fighters fall off their game, yet he appears to be in his prime. He's 7-1 in his current UFC run and comes in off of one of the best performances of his career. Lawler is a violent striker, who has learned to balance his ferocity with technique over the years, and now proudly stands as a top 10 pound for pound fighter in the world.

"The Natural Born Killer" Carlos Condit is a 13 year pro and longtime member of the Jackson/Winkeljohn team. Condit was the final WEC Welterweight champion and continued to find success when he transitioned to the UFC. At one time he was a combined 10-1 in those two organizations, a former WEC champion, and held the interim UFC title (though it's hard to truly consider him a UFC champion, as he was just keeping the belt warm for GSP). But after sitting out most of 2012 to await a big fight with Georges St. Pierre, Condit's momentum quickly faded away. He lost that fight, starting a 1-3 skid that ended with a bad knee injury in 2014. Last year, Condit returned and looked great in defeating Thiago Alves, but with only 1 fight in nearly 2 years, it's very hard to know exactly where this former champion now stands.

Why should you care?

Have you ever seen these two men fight before? If so, how can you not be excited. The last time someone tried to take Robbie Lawler's belt, he beat that man to a bloody pulp in the fight of the year. Now, he faces another insanely determined foe. It's going to be good.