Dan Hardy walks us through one of his favorite fights as a fan." /> My Favorite Fight: Hardy on Pulver/Penn I | UFC ® - News
Article

My Favorite Fight: Hardy on Pulver/Penn I

UFC welterweight Dan Hardy walks us through one of his favorite fights as a fan.
My favorite fight has to be Jens Pulver vs. BJ Penn at UFC 35. Click to watch the fight
 
I was a fan of Jens Pulver. He was the fighter I really used to watch a lot of when I first started out. The first fight I saw of him was against John Lewis at UFC 28. He knocked him out with a big overhand left. I was a fan from that point on.

And obviously BJ Penn is more well-known now then he was at UFC 35. BJ had hair at the time, so that’s how long ago that fight was. Both guys were on top of their game.

Future Legends
Jens Pulver was the champion and BJ Penn was the contender. Everybody thought BJ was going to come in and win pretty comfortably but Jens Pulver stepped up his game in that fight – it was a great performance by both of them.

The fight was special to me because it was so evenly matched. They both had great boxing and ground game. For me it was one of those big steps forward in MMA where you could tell that the sport was evolving and everyone was becoming a more well-rounded fighter.

The armbar at the end of the second or third round is a moment in the fight that really stood out to me. BJ had Jens in a pretty much completely locked out armbar, right on the bone. There was a bit of debate whether Jens tapped or not.

On Repeat

When I first saw this fight, I was still very much a kickboxer trying to learn grappling. The fight was in 2002, two years before I had my first pro fight. I first watched the fight by myself on the internet in my room in the UK. After I watched the fight, I immediately went out and bought the DVD.

That fight became something I would watch before I went training. I would watch that fight a couple times a week before sparring. I would watch it early in the morning before I went to the gym. I used to go to the gym, then to university to do some work, and then back to the gym in the afternoon. So basically mixed martial arts was a huge distraction when I was supposed to be studying.

I haven’t watched that fight in a while, but I still have the DVD so I’m going to have to go back and watch it. There are only a few fights I do go back and watch but I am definitely going to go back and watch BJ vs Jens soon.
 
The Underdog

There was no arrogance with Jens. He worked hard and he was so happy that he was successful. I always rooted for him because no matter what, he was the underdog -- even when he was the champion.

I’ve met Jens a couple of times and he is he nicest guy you could ever meet. He had a real rough run where he lost six in a row a while back. I lost four in a row and that was really rough so I can relate. I’m still a Jens fan because he always shows up to fight and perform.

Watch Past Fights

Media

Recent
UFC matchmakers Joe Silva and Sean Shelby discuss what's potentially the greatest card in UFC history: UFC 200. Silva and Shelby preview Aldo vs Edgar, Velasquez vs Browne and much more.
Jun 29, 2016
UFC Minute host Lisa Foiles previews tonight's all-new episode of The Ultimate Fighter, airing on FS1 at 10pm/7pm ETPT.
Jun 29, 2016
With only two episodes left, there's a shocking development that could derail one fighter's dream. Don't miss an all-new The Ultimate Fighter tonight at 10pm ET on FS1.
Jun 29, 2016
Watch the Fight Night Sioux Falls post-fight press conference live following the event.
Jul 13, 2016