clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Dan Hardy vs. Diego Sanchez boxing bout cancelled, Hardy unsure about future comeback attempts

UFC Fight Night: Open Workouts
Dan Hardy
Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Dan Hardy’s comeback has hit another snag and this time it might be a permanent one.

The one-time UFC welterweight title challenger was scheduled to box fellow former UFC standout Diego Sanchez in an exhibition bout this Saturday at AO Arena in Manchester, England, but Hardy told Submission Radio that the bout is off.

According to Hardy, because British network Sky Sports is now airing the event — which is headlined by an exhibition bout between Ricky Hatton and Marco Antonio Barrera — it made changes to the lineup that included scrapping all of the undercard bouts in favor of fighters currently under contract with an associated stable.

“Yeah, so basically the card was picked up by Sky Sports and they decided that they wanted the Hatton/Barrera fights off the card and to add all the rest of their own fights to it,” Hardy said (transcription via Denis Shkuratov). “‘Cause obviously they got a deal with Boxer and they’ve got loads of fighters signed to their management team. So yeah, they basically just took the Hatton/Barrera fight and they cancelled the rest of the fights.

“I’ve had a bit of a chat with Diego about it. Of course, he was disappointed as well, but you know, it’s the fight game. It’s chaotic at the moment, and with new promoters getting into the businesses, I think sometimes they buy themselves a bit more than they can chew, and I think that’s what happened. I hope it goes really well. But aside from following Ricky Hatton’s Instagram, I’m not really hearing anything about it.”

Hardy and Sanchez, both 40, were originally scheduled to fight July 2 before the bout was pushed back to Nov. 12. This was to be Hardy’s first fight since Sept. 29, 2012, when he defeated Amir Sadollah at a UFC event in Nottingham, England. Soon after, Hardy was diagnosed with Wolff–Parkinson–White syndrome, a condition that he has battled ever since while working towards a return to competition.

The former UFC analyst plans to stay involved in MMA despite this setback, but is unsure if a comeback is in the cards now.

“My mum said it kind of feels like the universe is kind of telling you something here,” Hardy said. “Maybe it is. Maybe I’m just clinging onto something. But to be honest, I’m still feeling great, I still feel in good condition, my mind’s sharp, and there are a couple of options for the new year. Yeah, there’s a couple of options, couple of people’s names I’ve got in mind.

“But to be honest, I’m just kind of going with what comes to me at the moment. I’m so busy with the YouTube channel, with the new project that’s coming up in the new year. That’s gonna be incredible. That might give me an opportunity to compete again as well in mixed martial arts. I’m taking things in stride a bit more. I’ve had so many curve balls these last six months. It’s been a bit of stressful ride. But I’m sitting here today in front of you with a smile on my face, and I’m feeling very positive about the new year. Very, very positive.’

Watch Hardy’s full interview with Submission Radio here:

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the MMA Fighting Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your fighting news from MMA Fighting