Dan Hardy Proposes ‘MMA Champions League’ and Backs PFL-Bellator Merger


Dan Hardy Proposes ‘MMA Champions League’ and Backs PFLBellator Merger

In a shocking revelation, former UFC star Dan Hardy is determined to shake up the MMA world by proposing the creation of an “MMA Champions League” and advocating for a potential merger with Bellator. Speaking out against the politics that often prevent thrilling fights from happening, Hardy expressed his frustration with the missed opportunities and fans being denied the matchups they yearn for.

Francis Ngannou PFL
Francis Ngannou PFL

According to a report by BBC, Hardy’s ambition to establish an “MMA Champions League” stems from his desire to see fighters from different promotions compete against each other, transcending the barriers that have hindered these matchups in the past. The Professional Fighters League (PFL), where Hardy serves as head of operations in Europe, is open to forging closer ties with other renowned organizations like Bellator.

The recent confirmation of discussions between PFL and Bellator has ignited excitement among MMA enthusiasts. Hardy believes that this collaboration would be monumental, allowing the best fighters from both promotions to showcase their skills and create unforgettable matchups. He pointed to fighters like Vadim Nemkov and Ryan Bader as examples of the incredible talent Bellator possesses.

Dan Hardy MMA Champions League
Dan Hardy

Hardy’s vision extends beyond the realm of collaborations. With the ongoing success of the PFL, which offers substantial prize money and global recognition, Hardy envisions a future where fighters from various leagues converge in a grand tournament, resembling the prestigious UEFA Champions League in football. The ultimate goal is to provide fighters with more opportunities and allow fans to witness the clashes they’ve been craving.

“Bellator have done wonderful things over the past few years. You look at their champions, the likes of [Vadim] Nemkov, Ryan Bader – bring him over here and fight Ngannou – it would be an incredible partnership,” said Hardy.

“Ultimately I can see us [PFL and Bellator] working together at some point in the future. Those conversations are above my pay grade, which I think is a good thing because I’d be too excited, sat in the corner clapping my hands, but the idea of being able to match the PFL guys with the Bellator guys is huge.”

As the PFL continues to expand globally, with plans to launch leagues in Asia and Africa, Hardy highlighted rising stars like Connor Hughes and Lewis McGrillen as promising fighters to watch. These young talents epitomize the excitement and potential that the MMA Champions League could bring to the sport.

While Hardy acknowledges the protective nature of the UFC and its reluctance to engage in cross-promotional fights, he remains passionate about challenging the status quo. By advocating for collaborations and proposing the creation of an “MMA Champions League,” Hardy aims to break down the barriers that have hindered dream matchups and bring a new era of excitement to the world of MMA.

Tyson Fury vs. Jon Jones and Francis Ngannou: A Dream Matchup, But Not Anytime Soon, Says Andre Ward

In a tale of ultimate combat fantasies, former boxing champ turned analyst Andre Ward has unveiled his wildest dreams for Tyson Fury—a spectacle that involves Fury clashing with both Jon Jones and Francis Ngannou. However, Ward’s dream matchup seems distant as he acknowledges that Fury needs to return to the squared circle and face other contenders before embarking on such extraordinary ventures.

While Ngannou, the ex-UFC heavyweight champion, gears up for his promotional debut in the PFL, he intends to step into the boxing ring first—a move that could potentially lead him to an encounter with Fury. UFC President Dana White, on the other hand, has thrown down the gauntlet to Fury, proposing a showdown against the current heavyweight titleholder Jon Jones, aiming to determine the true “baddest man on the planet.”

Ward, in his unmistakable excitement, revealed his heart’s desire for both the Jones-Fury clash and the Fury-Ngannou extravaganza. However, he understands the intricate dance of promotion played by White, conceding, “I respect Jon Jones’ fight game, and I would like to see the [Jones vs.] Tyson Fury thing, or the Francis [fight].”

Tyson Fury’s journey has been a rollercoaster ride, punctuated by retirement rumors, resounding comebacks, and public negotiations for potential matchups, including Ngannou, Jones, and Usyk. Yet, as Ward dons his realist cap, he doubts that Fury will engage in battle against either Jones or Ngannou in the near future. “I think Tyson will take a bag like Floyd did, but I think Tyson is really trying to figure this boxing thing out,” Ward asserted. He believes Fury should prioritize securing a boxing fight, perhaps against Anthony Joshua, before even entertaining the idea of MMA.

The saga of Ngannou’s free agency has captivated the MMA world, with boxing matchups acting as a contentious sticking point in negotiations. While White’s actions seem to undermine his former champion at every turn, Ward praises Ngannou’s tenacity and resilience. “All the stuff that Dana is doing is kind of white noise. That dude is getting ready to get paid,” Ward remarked, admiring Ngannou’s unwavering pursuit of his desired outcome.

As fans eagerly anticipate the spectacle of Fury facing off against Jones and Ngannou, they must temper their excitement, as the boxing world eagerly awaits Fury’s return to the ring and the fulfillment of their clamoring demands. Only then can the dreams of these epic showdowns become a reality.

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