The stage was set for a hard fought battle between the two top Welterweights in the UFC. Dan Hardy the brash Brit with hands of stone faced off against the talented and relentless French-Canadian. At the end of the night it was Georges St. Pierre retaining his title with his dominating wrestling ability.
Although St. Pierre won the fight, perhaps the most surprising part of the fight was Hardy’s refusal to tap to several submissions.
Most fans only praise the winner and seldom credit the opposition for their performance. However in this case Hardy was possibly more impressive in his loss then St. Pierre was in his win. Fans are quick to notice and point out the flaws in Hardy’s take-down defense which is a viable argument. However refusal to tap to devastating painful submissions is not something that can easily be learned.
We are used to a submission being the end of the fight. It is very rare occasion in MMA to have a fighter struggle while being totally locked in a submission.
Some notable examples are Sakuraba’s rolling kimura against Renzo Gracie where Renzo’s arm was broken. Another famous example is Quinton “Rampage” Jackson being caught in a Ricardo Arona triangle and seemed to be finished and pulling off one of the most praised slams in MMA history.
Dan Hardy should now rightfully be added to that prestigious list. Hardy survived two submissions that were in deep, painful and possibly career altering. Hardy showed great heart and determination in his refusal to give up.
Dan should be proud that he has learned where he needs to focus his energies but that his determination is miles passed many other fighters competing in the UFC. George said it best telling Hardy that he lasted longer than GSP had in his first title shot going the entire distance.
I am sure that after a few days of recuperation Hardy will realize this point as well and should be commended for his efforts. What we learn about people inside of the cage can sometimes amaze you. The work, sacrifice, determination, and sheer will in this case can make a fan change their opinion about someone which has hopefully happened for Hardy.
If there are any sponsors seeking to represent Dan Hardy in the future my suggestion would be Jesus Didn’t Tap clothing all that would need to be added to the shirt would be “Neither did Hardy.”