After destroying all six of his amateur and professional opponents all by way of first-round knockouts, Greg Hardy’s UFC debut was just a matter of time. And that time will reportedly be on January 19th at the Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn, New York for UFC Fight Night.
The 6’5”, 265 pound former Pro Bowl defensive lineman will face Allen Crowder (9-3), who hasn’t fought since December 2017 but who has five of nine wins by knockout. Contracts have not yet been signed, but UFC President Dana White told ESPN that the heavyweight fight, which will be broadcast on ESPN+ 1, is close to being finalized.
Here’s where things get dicey.
UFC scheduled Hardy to fight on the same card as Rachael Ostovich, whose husband faces a second-degree assault charge for allegedly beating her last month, claiming she suffered a broken orbital bone. Hardy’s professional football career was cut short in 2015 because of off-the-field issues, including a 2014 conviction in a domestic violence case. Hardy had the charges dropped after the victim failed to show up at court.
Dana White has expressed that Hardy’s checkered past will “follow him for the rest of his life” and is willing to give the 30-year-old a second chance. I think a lot of people can get on board with a rebirth, but to throw Hardy on a card that would undoubtedly garner controversy is just sloppy.
Dana White has yet to respond to the uproar.