UFC Welterweight champion Johny Hendricks is close to being 100% after a successful surgery to his injured right biceps last March.

at 85 percent

According to Kenny Monday, Hendricks’ wrestling coach, the 31-year old Oklahoma native is now  “around 85%” recovered from the injury that has kept him off the Octagon since UFC 171. Monday said that while Hendricks is already training daily without any limitations, it’s likely that the champ will be back in February or March 2015 since the UFC schedule is fully booked right now.

Monday adds that Hendricks could be ready to fight later this year, but since his first title defense is expected to headline a UFC Pay Per View event, then it will have to wait. The UFC has already released its schedule through January 31 and all the main event fights have already been booked.

Rematch with Robbie

Hendricks is expected to make his first title defense against the man he defeated last March to win the vacant UFC welterweight title. Hendricks fought Ruthless Robbie Lawler in a back and forth bout which Bigg Rigg won by a close unanimous decision at UFC 171.  After winning the belt, Hendricks revealed that he suffered a torn right biceps during training and that he would be needing surgery.

Lawler has fought twice since UFC 171 when he knocked out Jake Ellenberger at UFC 173 and then defeated Matt Brown by unanimous decision at UFC on Fox last July 26 to earn another title shot against the champion.

GSP to return?

In a related news, UFC President Dana White announced last week that should former UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre return to the octagon, he will be guaranteed a title shot. It can be recalled that St. Pierre walked away from the sport after his controversial split decision victory over Johny Hendricks at UFC 167 last November 2013.

But it’s unclear whether St. Pierre will even return to the octagon after announcing that he won’t fight again unless he and his opponent will ” be thoroughly tested for the most advanced PEDs by a credible and independent body like VADA or USADA under the strictest standards of the WADA code.

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