Dan Hardy klargör sina kontroversiella twitterinlägg. ”The Outlaw” tror inte att Tito Ortiz eller Bellator var med på att koreografera matchen mot Chael Sonnen.
Efter helgens Bellator 170: Ortiz vs. Sonnen var det många som ifrågasatte huvudmatchen mellan Tito Ortiz (19-12-1) och Chael Sonnen (28-15-1), som den förstnämnda tog hem via submission i den första ronden.
”The #Bellator170 main event was more choreographed than a Brittany Spears music video. Shame really… It might have been a fun fight,” skrev ”The Outlaw” bland annat i ett twitterinlägg som senare raderades.
”I was being fatuous at the time”
I det senaste avsnittet av The MMA Hour diskuterades frågan av MMA-journalisten Ariel Helwani, som pekade ut problematiken i att en så välkänd profil och respekterad som Hardy kom med så allvarliga anklagelser.
Senare i programmet ställde Hardy upp på en intervju där han klargjorde sin ståndpunkt och menade att han uttryckte sig olyckligt i stundens hetta.
“You’ve got to understand, I was being fatuous at the time,” sa han. “It was a rather flippant comment, but watching the whole build-up, and I’ll give you exactly my perspective, from an analyst’s point of view. I saw Chael Sonnen selling this awesome story about how much it meant to for him to beat Tito, and the whole family thing came up.”
”I think Tito was all in”
Han menade att han inte tror att Ortiz var med på att koreografera matchen – riktade istället stark kritik mot just Sonnens tveksamma insats.
“Now, when I first watched it, the first time around, I didn’t see the controversy of the tap, I don’t know what that was, and I’m not suggesting that Tito had anything to do with it. To me, Tito looked like he was celebrating like he’d just won his UFC belt again. I think Tito was all in. My question is whether Chael Sonnen went into that fight with the intention of giving it everything he’s got. Because that was the story that he sold everybody, and that what was I was so disappointed with,” sa han och fortsatte:
“When [Sonnen] got in there, he did a very, very basic single-leg takedown, which even me with awful takedown defense could have stopped, and I’ll allow Tito’s the bigger man, but Chael’s been watching him his whole career. He’s been planning on fighting Tito for his whole career, so surely he would have prepped for that. Second of all, just the progression that he allowed Tito to get to mount, and the lack of defense of the arm. I mean, there was no hand fighting at all. And then the finish of the choke, it wasn’t even around his neck.”
”I don’t think Bellator had anything to do with it”
När Helwani frågade om det inte kunde ha rört sig om en neck crank svarade Hardy följande:
“If you put your own head in that same position when you watch the fight, it’s silly to believe that…there’s a space, on the right side of his face, between the right side of your face and your right shoulder. And anybody who’s been in that situation and that position knows that it’s uncomfortable, yes, but it’s not a choke and it’s not a tapping position.”
”The Outlaw” var även noga med att poängtera att han inte heller tror att Bellator MMA var med på att rigga matchen. Det var endast Sonnens insats som fick honom att se rött.
“No, I don’t think so, I don’t think Bellator had anything to do with it, and I’m not necessarily saying the fight was contrived in any way,” fortsatte han. “That was just my first reaction when I saw it because I couldn’t think of any other way that Chael would have rolled over like that. And then giving my perspective of the fact that Bellator brought him in basically as a mouthpiece to draw in an audience, but I just never got the impression that they expecting him to do anything athletically. I mean, he’s 40 years old, and he’s been retired for a time. From my perspective it seemed like he was there to kind of give Tito this big boost, and he just looked like he didn’t want to fight.”
Hela avsnittet hittar du här.
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Omslagsbild: Vince Cachero