It looks like Alexander Volkov has received a replacement opponent for UFC Moscow. Ex-NFL star Greg Hardy has answered the call to step in on late notice and face the Russian in front of his native crowd.
MMA Fighting confirmed an initial report from ESPN, confirming the matchup. Bout agreements have not been signed as of this writing, but the fight is expected to be finalized shortly. Now, the fight between Volkov and Hardy is shifted into the co-main event, with the featherweight matchup between Zabit Magomedsharipov and Calvin Kattar now serving as the main event.
The news comes just days after Hardy’s initial unanimous decision win over Ben Sosoli at UFC Boston was overturned due to Hardy’s apparent illegal use of an inhaler in between rounds. Hardy’s mixed martial arts (MMA) career has been widely criticized. Not only due to his history of domestic violence, but also due to the UFC throwing him low-tier opponents.
That will no longer be the case, however, as Hardy will step into enemy territory against the No. 7-ranked heavyweight in the UFC. The matchup likely won’t sit well with many UFC heavyweights, including Francis Ngannou, the clear-cut No. 1-contender for the heavyweight throne who volunteered to step in and face Volkov in Russia after ex-heavyweight champ Junior dos Santos pulled out.
He offered the following reaction on Twitter after news of Hardy’s entrance into the bout was broken.
What do you think about Hardy stepping in to face Volkov at UFC Moscow?