Greg Hardy (1-0) won his “Contender Series” debut by way of first-round knockout last night (June 12, 2018).
As a result, Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President and part-time “angel,” Dana White, awarded the former NFL star a developmental contract, which allows Hardy to continue competing on the quasi-regional circuit (likely another “Contender Series” bout) until he builds up enough experience to make his Octagon debut.
But, there’s no room for misconduct along the way.
“You talk to the people in his camp, they love the guy, men and women,” White said. “They think he’s a great guy and a guy who (was) probably doing drugs, drinking and made a big mistake. He’s the type of athlete, and he’s the type of guy that, if he does anything wrong, there will be no mercy for him.”
While his destruction of Austen Lane was impressive (more on that here), Hardy’s troubled past, which includes substance abuse and charges of domestic violence, overshadowed Tuesday night’s breakout performance.
“This guy has paid his dues, and like I said, he hit rock bottom,” White said. “You can point the finger at a guy all you want, but you can’t look down at a guy for trying to turn his life around and trying to be a better person. And I believe that’s what he’s doing.”
So much for getting “blackballed.”
No word yet on when (or where) Hardy, 29, will compete next, but he took little-to-no damage on “Contender Series” and will probably be looking to make a quick turnaround over the next couple of months.