HeavyweightsGreg Hardy (3-1, -275) vs. Dmitry Smoliakov (9-2, +235): It is not surprising that Hardy is getting a second shot to stick in the UFC, but it is shocking that he has drawn another co-main event assignment after the disaster that was his first fight inside the Octagon.
Hardy was essentially deemed too domestically violent for the NFL, but the UFC was more than willing to take him in to try and profit off of his notoriety. However, even MMA fans have their limits. Yes, the sport has its share of domestic abusers and other garbage people, but the boos that rained upon Hardy during his promotional debut showed that goodwill needs to be built up before the public is going to forgive you. Beyond that, Hardy’s performance was absolutely terrible. He was unable to knock out Allen Crowder in short order, at which point he gassed and ran out of ideas, save for illegally kneeing Crowder in the head to earn a disqualification loss.
Somehow, the UFC thought his first performance was worthy enough to feature Hardy again, this time against Smoliakov, who returns to the Octagon after showing absolutely nothing in his first two-fight run with the promotion. Crowder showed that even with tremendous physical disadvantages a smart and patient fighter can stay out of danger and wear out Hardy. However, Smoliakov is a blitzer who is all too willing to meet Hardy on his own terms. The pick is Hardy via first-round knockout, after which we will all hate ourselves for watching it.
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