Former NFL defensive end turned UFC fighter Greg Hardy did not have a very memorable UFC debut in January. The 30-year-old heavyweight lost via disqualification to Allen Crowder after throwing an illegal knee which he had argued to be more of a timing issue.
On Saturday at UFC Fort Lauderdale, Hardy will be taking his second consecutive co-headliner fight, this time against Dmitry Smolyakov. While many aren’t fond of these bookings, Hardy is looking at it as being in the good graces of the UFC’s top brass.
“It’s like being in the Super Bowl back to back,” Hardy told MMA Junkie during media day on Thursday. “It’s like being in a playoff game over and over again. It gives me confidence.
“I’ve got the opportunity to come out, show what I’ve got. The powers that be believe in me. It’s a great feeling.”
Hardy has yet to pick up a win in the UFC, but he already believes he will be a force to reckon with.
“I don’t think I matchup with anybody. I think I might be the biggest person in the UFC,” he said. “Hopefully I’m the fastest, one of the most athletic. I think the only difference between me and everybody else is my intelligence in the game and my training experience.
“I’ve been working every day tirelessly trying to catch up on that, but athletically and physically, there’s no comparison.”
UFC Fort Lauderdale takes place this Saturday, April 27th. It will be headlined by a middleweight fight between Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza and Jack Hermansson.