UFC on Fuel TV 5 Results: 5 Possibilities for Dan Hardy's Next Opponent

Scott HarrisMMA Lead WriterOctober 1, 2012

UFC on Fuel TV 5 Results: 5 Possibilities for Dan Hardy's Next Opponent

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    At UFC on Fuel TV 5, Dan Hardy used a widening array of skills to stymie Amir Sadollah and capture a unanimous decision victory in front of a hometown crowd in Nottingham, England. It was Hardy's second win in a row after he lost four straight and found himself in danger of being released from the UFC.

    But now, we're talking not about his job stability but rather his next challenge. It's a new day for Dan Hardy, or should we say Dan Hardy 2.0?

    Here are five possibilities for "The Outlaw's" next opponent.

5. Che Mills

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    Like Hardy, Che Mills is an established standup threat who showed a more well-rounded skill set Saturday night.

    Mills' win over Duane Ludwig wasn't exactly the cleanest of victories. But even before the canvas decided to eat Ludwig's knee, Mills was getting the better of him. He definitely took a step up.

4. Dong Hyun Kim/Paulo Thiago Winner

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    Both of these men have extremely strong ground games: Kim has a judo base; Thiago is a jiu-jitsu master.

    As a result, their fight could settle into a striking match when the grappling cancels out. There's no chance that would happen with Hardy. Really, how evolved is Hardy's wrestling? This fight would help us find out.

3. Kyle Noke

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    Kyle Noke is coming off a 45-second knockout of Charlie Brenneman (seen here doing the Olivia Newton John).

    Noke and Hardy are close together in the rankings and could certainly enliven the bottom half of any pay-per-view card. 

2. James Head/Mike Pyle Winner

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    James Head looked terrific in a recent win over Brian Ebersole. Mike Pyle earned Knockout of the Night honors for his dispatching of Josh Neer in June.

    Either one would help determine how seriously to take Hardy 2.0.

1. Matt Hughes

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    Dan Hardy has called out Matt Hughes more than once. And I think it's more than just an effort to get a name-brand scalp at a discount price.

    Hughes should not want a pity opponent as his career nears its end. This would fit within that parameter.

    Hey, why not? It's not like Hughes is an invalid. Would he have a wrestling advantage?

    I think it would be pretty fun to watch.