At UFC 99 Dan Hardy came away with the victory though it was a narrow split decision. While not as controversial as some split decisions there is a fair amount of discussion regarding the outcome of the fight.
Marcus Davis has come and out declared victory, eloquently saying, “I won that fight” and demanding a rematch on his own turf, either in Boston or Ireland (I thought he was a fake Irishmen though).
Dan Hardy responded by telling FiveKnuckles.com that he is game for a rematch.
“I understand why Marcus is still upset. He trained his ass off and came in great shape and didn’t beat a guy he hates. If he wants to let this get to him, that’s his business. There is nothing I can do to fix it; other than ask for a rematch and let him kick my ass (laughs). If I have to fight him again, I don’t care where the fight is. I never had bad blood in the first place. I was just having fun (messing) with him. My skin is too thick to get upset about nasty remarks.”
A rematch between these two welterweights makes perfect sense. Hardy and Davis generated a great deal of hype and excitement with their verbal sparring and the UFC should cash in for a second time on their hard work. For whatever reason, Davis seems incensed about the prospect of having lost to Hardy. Thus we can anticipate more of the same verbal skirmishes between the two fighters. For Dan, another fight against a solid welterweight will help develop his skills and status, a big plus for the second most prominent U.K. fighter in the UFC.
However there is a precedent against such a rematch. Michael Bisping defeated Matt Hamill in a much more controversial split decision and there has yet to be a rematch. UFC matchmaker, Joe Silva, did tell Hamill he would have a chance at redemption but an injury and Bisping’s drop to middleweight have prevented any rematch from occurring. While this example illustrates the uncertainty of matchmaking there is still great hope for a Davis-Hardy rematch.
If no rematch occurs, and there is no plausible explanation, like an injury, it could be that the UFC is more concerned with protecting their U.K. investment rather than putting him in a dangerous position for a second time.
Hopefully with all the fanfare Davis and Hardy created the UFC should be more than willing, if not thrilled, to add a second chapter to their colorful rivalry.
Zak Woods is the founder of the mixed martial arts blog WatchKalibRun.com