Dana White has heaped praise on former NFL star turned heavyweight contender Greg Hardy who suffered his first stoppage loss inside the Octagon at UFC Vegas 17 last month.

The ‘Prince Of War’ started his fight against Marcin Tybura well and dominated the opening round. Hardy displayed great improvements in his striking and was able to sting his veteran opponent with several hard shots to clearly take the opening round.

In round two things went south quick when Tybura managed to secure his first takedown of the fight. Hardy showed his inexperience and began to curl up on the mat rather than look to improve his position or stand up. Tybura swarmed with vicious ground and pound before the referee waved off the fight.

Speaking on the “SHOUT!” Buffalo Podcast White praised Hardy’s performance despite the face he suffered a loss and also admitted he had been surprised by the success the controversial former NFL star had enjoyed inside the Octagon.

“He looked damn good. He lost that last fight, but he looked damn good in it right up until he lost,” White said. “He’s done very well here. I didn’t expect him to possibly stick around this long, especially in this heavyweight division. There’s some nasty guys, but he’s done very well. It’s funny because the football guys seem to be the guys that like to cross over into MMA.” (Transcribed by BJPENN.com)

Hardy has been impressive since transitioning from American Football to MMA. After two wins on Dana White’s Contender Series he was invited to join the UFC. Hardy’s first fight with the premier fight promotion ended in controversial fashion as he was disqualified for illegally kneeing his opponent Allen Crowder. Hardy then picked up back-to-back KO wins over before he again found himself in the headlines for the wrong reasons. In between rounds during his decision win over Ben Sosoli, Hardy used an inhaler which is illegal. His win was eventually overturned to a no-contest. He followed that up with a decision loss to top contender Alexander Volkov. In 2020, Hardy beat Yorgan de Castro and Maurice Greene before falling to defeat at UFC Vegas 17.

Do you agree with Dana White? Has Greg Hardy done “very well” in the UFC?

A lifelong fight fan from Liverpool, England who has been covering mixed martial arts (MMA) and boxing for several years. Follow @JordanEllisUK on Twitter for all the latest fight news, views, interviews and live event coverage.