Hasim Rahman Jr was dropped by 320lb former NFL star and UFC heavyweight Greg Hardy in Austin, Texas on Saturday night, slumping to his second consecutive loss.
The boxer, whose dad is former heavyweight champion Hasim Rahman, was 12-1 going into tonight’s bout, but gave up a 94lb weight advantage to Hardy. And the ex-UFC star utilised that size difference to great effect as he brutalised the more impressive technical fighter with big, punishing shots and refused to tire despite his massive weight.
Hardy was used to 15-minute bouts with three five minute rounds in the UFC, as well as playing at the highest level in American football, which allowed him to build up an impressive and dangerous engine. Rahman Jr attempted to allow the bigger man to punch himself out with wild swings, and ended up on the receiving end of a few in the early exchanges.
It was the second round when Hardy ultimately managed to get his opponent down with a big counter-right. Rahman Jr attempted to get over the top, but the former football star was quick to the draw with his retaliation, and dropped his opponent to land an all-important knockdown in just a four-round fight.
The contest didn’t get much better for Rahman Jr in the third, although he did manage to land a few big shots and stay competitive throughout. He even was given the fourth by the judges, but it was too little, too late and the bout was awarded on the scorecards to Hardy; the only fight of the night to go to a decision.
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“He was looking good in the camp, I was excited,” Shannon Briggs, Hardy’s coach, told Mirror Fighting after the fight. “I lost my voice, I can’t even say ‘let’s go champ!’ His jab was incredible, his jab was snappy, he caught him with that good right hand, given his weight I was so impressed. He caught him with some good shots. He’s a huge guy, over 300lb, muscle, fast feet, fast hands, he’s got a good chin, I’m impressed, champ!”
Hardy improved to 2-0 as a professional boxer after leaving the UFC earlier this year, and is now keen to return to the ring for a bout with another heavyweight. He has limited fighting experience, having fought just 12 times as a professional in MMA and three times as an amateur, but was fast-tracked to the UFC and has fought some top names in the cage.