Is 20-0 Boxing World Champion Heather Hardy The Future Face Of Women’s Mixed Martial Arts?
UFC champion Conor McGregor is the undisputed face of men’s mixed martial arts (even if he is really into boxing right now). Over on the women’s side though, it’s been tough sledding for any of the fighters to get any traction as we have gone through multiple champions ever since the rapid downfall of Ronda Rousey.
Then, the woman who beat VanZant to give her a second loss, former Invicta FC Atomweight Champion Michelle Waterson, AKA The Karate Hottie, looked like she might finally get the recognition and title shot she has so long deserved. And then she lost. (She did get to pose naked for the ESPN “Body Issue” though, so I guess that’s…something.)
Last year I speculated that Jiu-Jitsu World Champion Mackenzie Dern has the potential to at some point become the face of women’s MMA. Heck, Dern beat THIS WOMAN in an open weight tournament, for God’s sake…
So far Dern is now 3–0 in her professional MMA career, but she’s been fighting for Legacy FC and not the UFC so she still has a way to go.
Now comes another potential star in the making named Heather Hardy. Hardy is undefeated as a professional boxer with 20 wins and holds the WBC International Female Super Bantamweight title. She also just made her MMA debut at Bellator 180 with a third round knockout.
At the post-fight press conference, Hardy said, “I think I just fell in love. I just worked so hard, and now I can say I did it too. A lot of people said I couldn’t do it or I wouldn’t do it. And I did.”