Johny Hendricks could have sulk on the sidelines and tried to wait out a chance at the UFC welterweight championship.

Hendricks, though, isn’t that kind of fighter. So, he accepted a bout with Jake Ellenberger at UFC 158 in March knowing that everything he has earned over the past year-plus could be gone with a loss.

That hasn’t fallen by the wayside as far as Ellenberger is concerned. Recently, Ellenberger (28-6) thanked Hendricks (14-1) for taking the fight during an appearance on MMA Weekly Radio.

He could’ve easily said, ‘No way, I’m not going to do it.’ But props to him for stepping up and taking the fight where there’s a lot to lose and not much to gain for him. I give more respect to him for taking the fight.

Many felt Hendricks would get the next crack at UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre, but GSP asked for – and received – Nick Diaz instead. Those will will be meeting in the main event of UFC 158.