by Jeff Cain – MMAWeekly.com
Dan Hardy gets a shot at the Ultimate Fighting Championship welterweight title when he faces champion Georges St-Pierre at UFC 111 at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.
His game plan is simple: knock GSP out.
“It’s difficult because he is looking good at the moment and it’s a difficult spotlight to be in, but all I need to do is land that one punch and that’s all I’m interested in. My game is striking. He knows that. I know that. It’s going to be no surprise that he’s going to want to take me down, and I’m going to want to knock him out,” Hardy told MMAWeekly.com content partner TapouT Radio.
“I’ve just got to go in there and apply my game plan. I’ve been working hard. I know exactly what I’ve got to do.”
St-Pierre may be the most difficult fighter to game plan for in the sport, but Hardy didn’t deviate too much from his normal training habits for the fight.
“I’ve got a good bunch of guys on my team. They’ve always prepared me well for fights, so I didn’t want to change too much. I brought in a couple of new guys, a couple of wrestlers that are on the British team and things like that. I brought in a couple different guys, but if it’s not broke, don’t fix it. I’ve got a winning formula a the moment,” said the British brawler. “I’m just preparing as normal for a good tear up, and I’m looking forward to it.”
Hardy hopes to keep the fight standing where he feels he has a definite advantage over the Canadian titleholder.
“I don’t think his striking is particularly brilliant. He’s a great fighter, don’t get me wrong, but he’s a great well-rounded fighter. In a kickboxing match, I’d be able to play with him pretty much,” stated Hardy.
“The thing that makes him effective with his striking is his ability to take people down. So he’s effective because people are scared of the takedown, and because they’re scared of the takedown they’re not putting fists on him, which is how he’s winning his fights. Serra went in there with a different frame of mind, you know, let’s put some fists on him and see what happens, and we all know what happened.”
Serra shocked the world with his first round TKO of the Canadia superstar.
“I think the difference between me and the other people that he’s been fighting is that they’ve been conscious of his takedown,” said the 27-year-old British fighter. “I’m the kind of guy that will just swing at him with a grin on my face and if I end up on the floor, I’ll worry about that when I get there.”
But what if St-Pierre does get Hardy to the ground?
“You’ll be seeing all kinds of things in there. I’ll be throwing everything from the floor. I’ve got a few tricks,” said the Team Rough House trained athlete. “If it hits the ground, everybody knows what my game plan is. I’m going to get back to the feet so I can beat the fake tan off him. That’s all I’m interested in.”