Welterweight Dan Hardy hasn't competed since 2012, due to a diagnosis of Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, a genetic condition that the Mayo Clinic defines as “the presence of an extra, abnormal electrical pathway in the heart that leads to periods of a very fast heartbeat. In most cases, the episodes of fast heartbeats aren’t life-threatening, but serious heart problems can occur." Prior to the diagnosis, the longest Hardy had gone without competing in a sport was a year, since he started Taekwondo lessons at the age of 7.
Now 38, Hardy plans to fight again. It was believed his return opponent would be Matt Brown, but "The Immortal" fights Dhiego Lima on June 16, so on a recent appearance on Submission Radio, "The Outlaw" said he's moving on, and wrote down a list of potential opponents that included:
Nick Diaz and Nate Diaz
Rafael dos Anjos
“I just saw today that [Brown] has been matched with Lima. So, I don’t know what’s going on there," said Hardy. "And they’ve kind of booked him as far back as they have either. I mean, he’s 19th of June. It’s the last fight card that the UFC have got on their schedule. It’s the only fight on the card at the moment. So, I don’t know what’s going on there. I’m trying to get in contact with the UFC and it’s proving very difficult at the moment. So, social media is the best way of going about it.
"I’ve got (shows list of names), there you go. That’s my 15 names on my list. That’s my hit list. I’ve got a list there. But there’s a list there of 15 guys there that at any point in the next couple of years I’d be happy to fight. And that I’d be very much appreciative of their competition as well, cause they’re all formidable individuals and all people that feel like I could find a way to beat. Which very much excites me. So, I’ll work down the list. I mean, Matt Brown is the one I want, cause he makes sense.
“Nick Diaz is my priority. I mean, a Diaz brother would be great, just cause I love their vibe, I love their trash talk and I think I could get inside their head the way they get inside other people’s head. And I always think their game has been, you know, over-celebrated, shall we say? They’re good, but they’re not technically great. They’re kind of sloppy. They’ve got good jiu-jitsu of course, but they don’t have any means of getting you to the ground without slapping the hell out of you like they did McGregor. I just think, you know, Diaz, the Diaz brothers have got such a name, and Nick’s been out for so long.
"And this is the thing that people forget - he’s been out in the bars in Vegas, and I’ve been sitting Octagon-side studying the sport and watching it grow. I feel like I’ve been absorbing souls. Like what’s his name off Mortal Kombat. Every fight I’ve watched I’ve absorbed something from it. And I do it on a daily basis. I watched the Canelo fight against Yildirim 12 times yesterday and I got a lot from that. Like, the amount of information in my brain. If I can communicate 10 percent of that into any combat sport, I’m feeling confident I could beat every single name on that list.”