by Damon Martin – MMAWeekly.com
British fighter Dan Hardy surprised many people on Saturday night with his win over Mike Swick, but maybe none so more than UFC president Dana White, who commented at the UFC 105 post-fight press conference that he was basically blown away with “The Outlaw” and his breakout performance.
Going into the bout, White felt that Swick had been highly underrated by many, and that Hardy definitely had his hands full with the American Kickboxing Academy fighter.
“My opinion going into this fight is that Mike Swick was one of the most underrated fighters in that weight division, because Mike’s been, when I say inconsistent, he’s been inconsistently fighting cause he’s always getting injured,” White said. “Mike Swick’s a really good fighter. I always say about him and (Yushin) Okami, they’re both highly underrated.”
When it was all over and Hardy’s hand was raised, White said he was extremely impressed with what the U.K. star was able to accomplish.
“He handled Swick easily, that is impressive,” White commented. “He did something I didn’t expect him to do tonight, he whooped Mike Swick’s ass. I did not expect that to happen.
“Dan could have finished that fight. Dan could have knocked him out. He had a couple opportunities, more than a couple opportunities, to knock Mike Swick out tonight. He’s going to get better every time he gets in there. I think he could have finished that fight tonight, he just didn’t.”
The UFC president shied away from saying there was much of a chance of Hardy’s next fight, a title shot against reigning welterweight king Georges St-Pierre, ending up in England. White believes the bout will take place in Las Vegas, but doesn’t know its timetable yet.
Whether it’s sooner or later, Hardy is just happy to have the chance to fight for the title. The usually boastful fighter was humble in victory at UFC 105.
“I’m honored to be in this position, the UFC they’re giving me a great opportunity,” Hardy said. “I’m going to make the most of it.”