There was once a time when Dan Hardy (25-10-1) was a feared striker in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Welterweight division.
While the British mixed martial artist came up short against Georges St-Pierre in a title fight at UFC 111, Hardy put forth an admirable promotional run before being diagnosed with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, which is a condition that attacks the heart's electrical system. And even though he has never experienced effects of the potentially serious ailment, the 33-year-old has taken a backseat to fighting and has focused on commentary and analysis for the UFC over the past few years.
However, it now seems as if Hardy is gearing up for a possible return to the cage. In a recent interview with MMA Junkie Radio, "The Outlaw" discussed his outlook on a comeback and what stipulations would have to be met.
"I like the way the sport is moving into this area where we’re having a lot of superfights. I like superfights," said Hardy. "If there are two guys I want to see fight, I’m not bothered by what weight class or what the rankings are. If I want to see them fight, that’s the fight that should be made. If there’s an overwhelming support for a matchup – I mean, when the (Conor) McGregor vs. (Nate) Diaz fight was made, who didn’t want to see that? There were so many people complaining about the weight class and this and that, but it was a fight we wanted to see, and I’d like to at least have the option to step in and just have those single marquee fights every now and then."
While his absence from competitive fighting would certainly effect a potential return to the Octagon, Hardy's ability to view the sport from an analytical aspect has given him a new found appreciation for all things mixed martial arts (similar to what transpired with current UFC Bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz).
"I have three (fights) on my contract, and I can’t imagine I’m going to fight more than three times," added Hardy. "I don’t feel as rushed as I used to. I’m enjoying this process of working as an analyst and a commentator, I’m learning so much in the process. I’ve just been at the (UFC) fighters summit hanging out with a bunch of up-and-coming hopefuls, and it’s just good to be in that space with those people and feed off of that energy."
It's unclear as to what capacity the UFC would want Hardy to come back in, but if superfights are on the table, the Diaz brothers should be put on speed dial.