While most MMA enthusiasts aren’t sold on Dan Hardy presenting much resistance against welterweight king Georges St-Pierre at UFC 111, the champ claims he’s preparing for the toughest test of his illustrious career.
It’s a tune GSP has sung many times before and Hardy isn’t fooled.
“I think he’s a smart champion, you know the reason he’s got the belt is because he takes people very seriously and he trains hard for all his fights,” Hardy told TopMMANews.com. “I don’t think he’s saying that because he doesn’t believe it. I’m sure obviously he thinks he’s within his ability to win the fight comfortably and I think partly the reason why he’s saying that is to kind of cover his own back a little.”
The Brit owns an impressive 23-6 pro record and will be riding a seven-fight winning streak into the March 27th title bout. While challenging the planet’s nastiest 170-pounder for his strap is an opportunity of a lifetime, Hardy believes all of the pressure is on the Gatorade and Under Armour endorsed golden boy.
“It’s a bigger fight for him than it is for me, oddly enough,” Hardy said of his nothing-to-lose mentality. “He’s in a situation where he has to win the fight. If he loses to me that alters the direction that his career is going.”
Right now, GSP’s quickly going down a path towards becoming the welterweight division’s G.O.A.T. Along his journey, he’s become one of MMA’s most coveted pitchmen and a loss would be devastating for not only his legacy, but his finances as well.
“Georges St-Pierre is in a position where he beat everybody there is to beat and now he’s fighting guys who offer a lot greater risk than there is a gain in the fight – he’s risking a hell of a lot stepping into the Octagon with me,” stated Hardy. “I’m in a situation where not only can I shock the MMA world, but I can shock everybody, even people within my team.
“This is the Muhammad Ali in the Thrilla in Manila, the fight he was never supposed to win.”
St-Pierre is an 8-to-1 favorite to retain his crown inside the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.