TORONTO – Incoming UFC heavyweight Greg Hardy will get a response for some time when he fights, perhaps at all times. That a lot appears sure.
However when Hardy (Three-Zero MMA, Zero-Zero UFC) was introduced for a January struggle towards Allen Crowder (9-Three MMA, Zero-1 UFC) for his promotional debut at UFC on ESPN+ 1, the response was maybe much more strong than what would have been regular.
Hardy, a former NFL standout, is a lightning rod of kinds as a fighter, given he has a previous with home violence. So when he was booked on the identical card as Rachael Ostovich (Four-Four MMA, 1-1 UFC), who fights Paige VanZant (7-Four MMA, Four-Three UFC) in Brooklyn, there have been various outcries.
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Ostovich presently is within the throes of her personal points with an alleged home violence incident together with her husband, who’s dealing with an assault cost in Hawaii. Ostovich was granted an order of safety from him because of this. The optics of Hardy preventing on the identical card with Ostovich, folks stated, weren’t good for the UFC.
However UFC President Dana White on Thursday defended Hardy’s spot on the cardboard to MMAjunkie, not lengthy after his his preliminary response.
“Initially, while you say ‘Individuals began reacting,’ let’s put that into context,” White informed MMAjunkie. “It wasn’t like that in any respect. Individuals weren’t reacting. … It actually wasn’t a difficulty. It was with a few folks. And if you wish to flip something into a difficulty, you may if you wish to flip one thing into a difficulty. The one individual that issues didn’t have a difficulty with it, and that’s all that issues to me.”
At Wednesday’s UFC 231 information convention in Toronto, media members reportedly have been requested to not ask White about something other than the principle and co-main occasions, which had their fighters in attendance.
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White stated that’s the place the reactions have been coming from, and that it merely was the UFC wanting to offer Saturday’s fighters their due at their information convention – and save non-UFC 231 matters for a later time.
However irrespective of how the UFC arrived at Hardy and Ostovich on the identical card, or when the reason was given as to why, White stated the subject will come up once more down the street – and that he wouldn’t have made the decision to have Hardy struggle in Brooklyn with out letting Ostovich in on it prematurely.
“He’s on the roster. He’s going to be on the cardboard with plenty of completely different folks,” White stated. “If this man is sweet sufficient, and he’s capable of stick round right here within the UFC, he’s going to be on the cardboard with plenty of completely different folks. It’s what it’s. I made the choice to signal this man and produce him in.
“Clearly once we did this struggle, I wouldn’t have performed that with out speaking to Rachael first. And I did, and he or she was superior about it. She stated, ‘Pay attention, his story isn’t my story. Everyone’s story is completely different, and I imagine in second possibilities. I’ve no drawback preventing on the cardboard with this man, and this man’s by no means performed something to me.’”
UFC on ESPN+ 1 takes place Jan. 19 at Barclays Heart Brooklyn, N.Y. It will likely be the UFC’s debut on ESPN, which is its new broadcast associate after a seven-year cope with FOX involves an finish later this month.
For extra on ESPN+1, take a look at the UFC Rumors part of the positioning.
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