Ex-NFL Star Greg Hardy Wins UFC Fight By First-Round Knockout; Dana White Comments
Former NFL star Greg Hardy continues his dominance in mixed martial arts.
Hardy, 30 — who previously played as a defensive end for the Dallas Cowboys and Carolina Panthers — beat Tebaris Gordon in just 17 seconds on the season finale of UFC’s Tuesday Night Contender Series on Tuesday night. This marked 6-foot-4, 278-pound Hardy’s second UFC victory by first-round knockout. The former football player also previously won three amateur MMA bouts.
According to Michael David Smith of NBC Sports’ ProFootballTalk, Hardy said he would open to returning to play in the NFL should either of his previous teams reach out to him.
“If the Cowboys or the Panthers call, I’m on my way,” Hardy stated after his victory.
Hardy last played in the NFL in 2015, and his transition to mixed martial arts over the last few months has been controversial, partly because of a domestic violence allegation he faced in 2014 while playing with the Panthers that led to a 10-game suspension and 18 months probation. The charges against him were later dropped.
UFC President Dana White told mmafighting.com that he believes Hardy still needs more opportunities to fight against tougher opponents and improve in all aspects of the sport before he can be allowed to compete in the UFC full-time.
“I told him, I said, ‘I hope you’re working on your wrestling, because I think guys are gonna start coming out and trying to take you down,’” said White. “I don’t see how much longer guys will come out and strike with him. He claims he’s working on his wrestling and his ground game all day, every day, so we’re gonna continue to build this guy, continue to get him fights and see what he does.
“It’s the level of competition. The guy is 1-0 and he just fought a guy who was 3-0.”