Hardy’s latest comments on his feud with Lewis come ahead of his main card fight against Tai Tuivasa at UFC 264 this weekend.
After back-to-back wins against Maurice Greene and Yorgan de Castro in 2020, Hardy’s heavyweight rise ran into a setback when he was dismantled by Poland’s Marcin Tybura last December. Having gone 0-2 against ranked opponents, Hardy will look to rebound against the previously ranked “Bam Bam” on Saturday.
But ahead of his crucial pay-per-view fight, it seems that comments made in 2018 by Derrick Lewis are still playing on Hardy’s mind. The 32-year-old’s grudge originates from Lewis’ admittance that he’d enjoy entering the cage with Hardy because of his history with alleged domestic violence, something the former American football defensive end was never convicted of.
Despite initially being accused of a disturbing assault of his ex-girlfriend Nicole Holder in 2014, a no-show in court from Holder after Hardy appealed the conviction led to the case being dropped.
During UFC 264 media day, Hardy didn’t hold back when he went on an insult-filled rant directed at “The Black beast.” When asked about the source of the pair’s bad blood, Hardy suggested that he’d have been treated differently if he made the same comments about an up-and-comer as Lewis did about him.
“Say my name, and I’mma come for you,” Hardy said of Lewis. “The boss is gonna send me. And that’s a guy that wasn’t mentioned but decided to grace his fat, greasy, Popeyes-chicken lips with my name when I was a peasant, when I was a young child. What would it look like for me to go attack somebody that just came off The Contender Series right now? You’d be like, ‘Ah, he’s childish.’ But you guys let that man gyrate-belittle me?”
Hardy didn’t stop there. Despite admitting that Lewis is the better fighter right now, “The Prince of War” labeled Lewis an “ex-con” and said he’ll handle him when he needs to.
“Nah, he needs to be handled. He’s an ex-con that doesn’t know when to shut up. I’mma put him down when I need to. But of course, timing’s everything. I’m still not there yet. And I’m willing to admit that he is the better man right now….but he’s still a fatty.”
Despite his heavy attack on Lewis, Hardy will need to remain focused on the heavyweight he’s set to enter the Octagon with this weekend. Tuivasa secured first-round knockouts against Stefan Struve and Harry Hunsucker in his last two fights and has looked back to his best. Hardy will look to prevent the Las Vegas crowd from witnessing Tuivasa’s infamous ‘shoey’ on Saturday night.
Do you think Greg Hardy will ever be able to challenge Derrick Lewis inside the Octagon?