Greg Hardy, the former NFL star who turned to the UFC, has a fight booked already after his last fight in the middle of October. Hardy will now fight the Russian heavyweight, Alexander Volkov at the UFC event in Moscow. He’s not doing it for just any regular reason however, he also wants to redeem himself for his latest blunder.
On October 18th, Greg Hardy had his sixth professional fight. This was his fourth fight in the UFC. His opponent was a newcomer named Ben Sosoli. Rather than knocking Sosoli out in the first round like Hardy’s done to his other opponents, Hardy decided to show off his endurance and cardio. Hardy went three full rounds against Sosoli, and the judges gave him the win.
However, between rounds 2 and 3, while Hardy was resting, he asked for his inhaler. According to Hardy, his inhaler was approved for use in his fights, and he was even given permission from an official to use it. As it turns out, the person who gave Hardy his approval was not actually in any position to do so.
Because no one in the sports commission had actually allowed Hardy to use his inhaler, him using his inhaler was ruled an illegal act. As a result, his win was overturned. Hardy, in a statement he made after that decision to overturn his win, said that it was a mistake he made due to his inexperience.
Former heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos was supposed to fight Volkov as the main event of UFC Moscow. However, dos Santos pulled out of the fight about two weeks before the event due to a staph infection of his leg. The UFC scrambled to find someone that can fight in just two weeks, and Greg Hardy stepped up to the plate.
This will be Hardy’s second fight in the span of 23 days. This is a very fast turnaround time for any UFC fighter. Most UFC fighters will wait months between fights, so this was clearly a bold move by Hardy. Hardy needs to make a brave move like this, because after Inhalergate, many fans don’t know if Hardy is a UFC fighter or just someone who doesn’t understand the rules of the sport.
However, Hardy isn’t just taking this fight to redeem himself. He’s also taking this fight because it makes a lot of sense.
Greg Hardy vs. Alexander Volkov
Volkov is one of the tallest men in the UFC right now, as he’s about 6-feet 7-inches tall. He’s a great fighter too, and he uses his long arms and legs to strike his opponents from long range. Volkov made his UFC debut in 2016, and he won his first four fights, including a knockout win over the former champion, Fabricio Werdum.
However, in his latest outing, Volkov got knocked out in the last 15 seconds of his fight against Derrick Lewis. Volkov had been winning the fight dominantly up until those last 15 seconds, when Lewis landed a powerful right-hand.
This knockout loss is exactly why Hardy believes that he can beat Volkov. Lewis is a strong fighter, but many think that he’s too one-dimensional. Hardy thinks that he’s more skilled than that. Hardy believes that he has all the tools that he needs to knock Volkov out.
But, this fight will be Hardy’s seventh professional fight. For Volkov however, this will be his 38th professional fight. In terms of experience, Volkov is clearly ahead.
Furthermore, Volkov is a ranked heavyweight, and he’s ranked 7th right now. If Hardy can knock Volkov out on short notice, then Hardy will not only redeem himself, but also propel himself up the UFC rankings. If Hardy wins, then it won’t be long until he fights for the title.