Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
It still could be.
That's because the former UFC welterweight number one contender thinks his head is "elsewhere" following a third round submission loss to "Lights Out" at the UFC on Versus 5 event last Sunday night (Aug. 14) in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Zuffa kingpin Lorenzo Fertwitta quickly blasted out a tweet indicating "The Outlaw's" job was safe following two and a half rounds of slam-bang action, but the boisterous Brit says he needs some "time off to see where the future takes him."
"I don't even know what there is to say, to be honest. It was a tough fight and exactly what I expected, except for the squeeze on the neck at the end. And I did tap and I normally would say I would never tap, but I've got no shame in admitting defeat to Chris. I shot in, thought I would score a couple of points, you know, even out the round a little bit, but I went straight into his guillotine. I knew it was a strong technique of his and he got me with it. I think my head's elsewhere to be honest. I'm going to step back a little bit and take some time, just enjoy being in the gym for a little while and see where the future takes me."
As far as UFC careers go, Hardy went in like a lion and out like a lamb.
After stringing together four straight wins inside the Octagon, "The Outlaw" was upended by division champion Georges St. Pierre in their UFC 111 title fight just over a year ago.
A surprise knockout loss to Carlos Condit would follow at UFC 120 last October and Anthony Johnson continued the downward spiral at Fight Night 24 by taking the slugger down and controlling him for the better part of three rounds.
UFC on Versus 5 was supposed to be his chance to "go out on his shield" against a fellow slugger and it looked to be the case -- until Hardy made a mental error and went for a late takedown to score a few points with the judges.
The rest, as they say, is history.
So too, is the Brit's career, unless he can find a way to regroup and come back for another run.
Any Maniacs out there want to see him try?