Dan Hardy has made his wish to fight Nate Diaz clear ahead of his eventual return to the UFC octagon after a lengthy period spent on the sidelines.
It’s almost easy to forget that The Outlaw was once upon a time one of the finest welterweights on the planet – one who challenged the legendary Georges St-Pierre for the divisional title, albeit in defeat.
After being forced into an early state of semi-retirement due to him being diagnosed with Wolff–Parkinson–White syndrome – a heart disorder that left him unable to compete.
Thankfully Hardy was finally medically cleared to fight last year and in the time since, he has spoken about a return to the octagon for one final outing.
Though revered for his work as an analyst, his electric fighting style was what originally endeared him to fans all those years ago and in a recent appearance on The Joe Rogan Experience podcast, he explained how he is making moves to re-enter the USADA testing pool.
“Right now what I’m going to do is get back in the USADA testing pool. I have to be in the pool for four months. Once I’m in the pool for four months, then I have the option to fight if I choose to.
“I’m going to do four months (in the pool), because I’ve never officially retired.
When asked by ESPN‘s Brett Okamoto who he would prefer to fight in his comeback bout, he cited welterweight contender Nate Diaz as the man he would like to get into the octagon with.
Going one step further, he outlined his belief that Nate’s supposed weakness – his defense against leg-kicks – would serve as the ideal path to victory for him.
“That is a good question. I daydream about that most days. Honestly, right now, the guy everyone wants to fight is Nate Diaz. That’s the ideal pick.
“Oh, I’d eat his lead leg up until he starts falling onto my punches and then I knock him out. Simple.”