DWTNCS veterans Greg Hardy and Matt Sayles have their next fights set, but only one will actually be in the UFC.
A couple of Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series winners have had their next bouts set, under very different circumstances. On the DWTNCS 12 broadcast Tuesday, the UFC announced that Matt Sayles had been booked to appear at UFC 227. He’ll face Sheymon Moraes at the Los Angeles card, which takes place next month. Meanwhile, disgraced former NFL star Greg Hardy, who won a developmental deal with his appearance on DWTNCS, will appear on the show again, rather than head to the UFC with just a 1-0 record. Per a report by ESPN’s Ariel Helwani, Hardy will appear for the second time this season, on the August 7 episode.
Hardy (1-0), unlikely to ever live down the domestic violence charges leveled against him, was 3-0 as an amateur before defeating another former NFL star, Austen Lane, on the Contender Series back in June. It was Hardy’s first fight, Lane’s fifth. Hardy, however, scored the knockout in just over a minute.
That earned him a developmental gig with the UFC, meaning the company would look outside the promotion to get him some seasoning. But rather than head to a friendly promotion like LFA, they’re opting to keep Hardy more or less in house in this instance. Hardy will face Tebaris Gordon (3-0) in his next bout, a North Carolina heavyweight who clocks in just shy of the heavyweight limit. Gordon also boasts three finishes in three fights.
Sayles (7-1), meanwhile, beat Yazan Hajeh a week after Hardy’s appearance on the Contender Series. Sayles was one of four lucky winners on the June 19 edition of the show to pick up contracts, a first for DWTNCS. His opponent, Sheymon Moraes, is 9-2 in his pro career to date but dropped his UFC debut to Zabit Magomedsharipov.