Back in 2009, if you'd have asked any hardcore MMA fan to name the fighter who would have the best chance at knocking Georges St. Pierre from his perch atop the UFC's welterweight mountain, they probably would've told that you Dan "The Outlaw" Hardy was the man to do it.
Riding high on a four-fight win streak heading into his collision with St. Pierre in the spring of 2010, fans would've been hard pressed to name another mixed martial artist who had a better chance of stopping "Rush" than Hardy would.
Obviously, that's not quite the way it happened. Instead of becoming the man who finally bested St. Pierre, Hardy would simply go on to join the rather long list of fighters who have come up short in their quest for welterweight gold.
In what has become Georges St. Pierre's calling card, the champion would simply grind his way to a five-round unanimous decision over "The Outlaw."
Having lost two fights since the title bout with St. Pierre, Hardy has gone from title contention all the way to now running the very real risk of being cut if he cannot put together a winning effort against Chris Lytle tomorrow night at UFC Live.
No matter how you look at this turn of events, however, one thing is certain: The UFC wants Dan Hardy to win this fight. Wait, let me rephrase that. The UFC needs Dan Hardy to win this fight.
Don't believe me? Read on.