Hardy knocks out opponent within a minute, earns UFC deal.
Former NFL lineman Greg Hardy has officially earned himself a developmental contract with the UFC, after knocking out fellow NFL alum Austen Lane in just 57 seconds on “Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series” in Las Vegas last night.
Hardy, who last played in the NFL as a member of the Dallas Cowboys during the 2015 season, has been training MMA since 2016, following a domestic violence incident led to a lengthy suspension. In each of his first three amateur fights he has knocked out his opponent in the first round.
“It’s awesome news,” Hardy said after the fight, according to ESPN. “I get an opportunity to show what I’ve got, go back and work hard and come back even better than before. It’s exciting. It’s everything I could ask for.
“I just want to get back in the ring. Whatever show it is, I just want another opportunity to fight. Man, I’m having the time of my life and really enjoying it.”
According to Yahoo Sports, UFC President Dana White said afterward, “You see he has power and he’s a big heavyweight but he needs to work more and get more fights. I have a few ideas on what to do with this guy to let him develop. We’ll try to build him up.”
White added, “The reality is if this guy stays clean for the next 10 years, wins a world title and is one of the greatest mixed martial arts of all time, he’s always going to hear about his past,” White said. “It’s going to follow him for the rest of his life. He’s done everything right so far. He’s paid his dues, hit rock bottom, built himself back up and is trying to make a living. “