Hendricks was the first of the two to announce retirement from competition, as he retired this past June. Hendricks is a former UFC Welterweight Champion, defeating Robbie Lawler by unanimous decision at UFC 171 to claim the gold. Hendricks would lose the title in his first defense, which was a rematch against the aforementioned Lawler at UFC 181. Hendricks ended his professional MMA career on a two fight losing streak and the former champion hasn’t picked up a win in almost two years.
Ward retired earlier this month after a successful run in Bellator MMA, where the fighter earned a record of 9-6-0. Ward was set to fight Andre Fialho at Bellator 207, but withdrew from the fight and that is what would lead to his retirement. Ward ends his professional MMA career on a two fight losing streak, dropping bouts to the duo of Paul Daley and Fernando Gonzalez. Ward, much like his opponent in Hendricks, has no professional boxing or bare knuckle boxing experience to speak of.
WBKFF 1 takes place on Friday, November 9 from the Casper Events Center in Casper, Wyoming with Phil Baroni and Chris Leben headlining.