It seems like Greg Hardy’s transition to mixed martial arts is going to be a smooth one. After a number of successful fights, he’s now ready for his UFC debut. Hardy won his last bout as a -1300 favorite, according to BetDSI, but now he’ll face someone his own size.
Hardy has often been in the headlines but usually it was for legal issues that caused him to lose his NFL career (for now). However, Hardy will make his professional debut on a show headlined by UFC promoter Dana White.
Hardy was a Pro Bowler in 2013 for Carolina and he also played for Dallas. However, Hardy has also been suspended for domestic-violence issues, along with drug possession and he hasn’t played in the NFL since 2015 and in 2016, he had his amateur MMA debut. In total, Hardy has had three amateur fights and he has won all three by KO or TKO in the first round. Most recently, Hardy defeated Ryan Chester by first-round punches at Legacy Fighting Alliance 33 in Dallas.
White will kick off the second season of “Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series” on June 12th, and he has signed up Hardy to take on Austen Lane. The two will fight in the heavyweight division, and Lane is also a former NFL player who was drafted in 2010, but after playing with Jacksonville, Kansas City, Detroit and Chicago, he announced his retirement from the NFL in 2015. Lane has had a great start to his MMA career, winning all five of his amateur fights by KO or TKO, four of which came in the first round. Since becoming a professional fighter, Lane is 4-0-0 with for KO/TKO wins, and all of those also came in the first round. This should be a significant step up in competition for Hardy.
This could also be a boost for White and his series as people will be curious to see how Hardy does against a similar opponent, although Lane has more experience. While Hardy is extremely controversial (and for very good reason), this is something that is going to get the attention of the mainstream media. Whether you like him or not, White is an excellent promoter who knows how to get the UFC’s name out there in the media. “Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series” can be seen at UFC.tv.
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