Thursday, January 27, 2022

Hardy Still Hopes To Fight Woodley In 2022 Despite Paul Rematch

Despite Tyron Woodley being set to face YouTuber-turned-boxer Jake Paul for a second time this weekend, his fellow former UFC welterweight Dan Hardy still hopes to fight him in 2022.

Woodley, a former UFC Welterweight Champion, departed MMA’s biggest stage after losing four fights on the bounce. After an unlikely feud with Paul developed following the internet personality’s boxing match with Woodley’s teammate Ben Askren, “The Chosen One” put his reputation on the line by throwing on the gloves for a bout with “The Problem Child.”

After a largely uneventful eight rounds, the combat sports community was left disappointed as Woodley fell on the wrong side of a split decision. Despite his calls for a rematch, which culminated in him seemingly honoring a pre-fight tattoo bet, Woodley appeared to be left out in the cold by Paul, who suggested he’d never run it back with the 39-year-old.

Fast forward less than four months and Paul vs. Woodley 2 is set for December 18 courtesy of Tommy Fury pulling out of his grudge match with the Cleveland native.

Hardy Says “There’s Still Time” To Make Woodley Fight Happen

Tyron Woodley’s second clash with the YouTube sensation comes after he’d appeared set to face former UFC analyst Dan Hardy. In recent months, the pair have developed a rivalry thanks to some exchanges on social media. Reports in November suggested the two former 170-pound UFC stars were preparing to meet in the ring early in 2022.

With the latest revelation, it stands to reason that this clash could be in jeopardy, especially if Woodley emerges victorious on December 18 and sets up a trilogy match with Paul. But despite surprisingly rooting for his foe, Hardy still believes he could be standing face-to-face with Woodley next year.

During an appearance on Submission Radio, “The Outlaw” suggested his planned matchup with Woodley, which was looking good for March, still has time to go ahead.

“It makes sense as to why he’s gone a bit quiet with the other promoter that we’ve been speaking to. Because, you know, they probably had him in reserve thinking one of these guys might fall out anyway. But, you know, the fight that we were talking about is in March, so there’s still time to make that happen… If he wants to fight, I’ll fight him. As long as he knows that’s the facts then I’m happy. He knows that there’s a contract on the table, and if he doesn’t sign it, then he knows the reasons why and they’re between him and himself.”

Tyron Woodley has since come out and stated that a fight against Hardy does not excite him, thus throwing even more cold water on this bout taking place. Still, who’d have thought that a Jake Paul performance in the ring would play a factor in whether or not we see Dan Hardy, who hasn’t competed since 2012, and a former UFC champion throwing on the boxing gloves? What a bizarre state combat sports is in.

Would you like to see Dan Hardy and Tyron Woodley settle their differences inside the squared circle next year?

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Harvey Leonard
Harvey Leonard is an MMA journalist with experience writing and creating content for publications like Sportskeeda, GiveMeSport, and WhatCulture. He has a degree in Sports Journalism, having graduated from Southampton Solent University in England in 2020.