Bellator 222 is one of the promotion’s marquee events that will be held in Madison Square Garden on June 14 and Heather Hardy was recently added to the card.
New York, NY – The Bellator 222 press conference was held on April 9 inside the Viacom HQ in New York City. One of the fighters featured was Heather Hardy, who will be returning to MMA after a pair of boxing fights last year. All 22 of Hardy’s boxing fights have taken place in the Empire State and the Brooklyn native simply believed she belonged on this card.
“It’s like Dillon [Danis] said up there, I earned this. I earned the right to fight in my home city. I hustled tickets in the beginning of my career, 22 boxing fights, became well-known with the media. It’s definitely a plus to fight in front of your home fans but anyone can do it, you just have to work hard.”
There have been many fighters who signed with Bellator to start their MMA career after excelling in other martial arts. Alongside fighters like Aaron Pico, Dillon Danis, Ed Ruth, and others, Hardy is one of those fighters and is glad to have a big stage waiting for her in MMA.
“I think it’s awesome. We’re all fighters at heart, right? I get in the cage and I don’t pretend to be this great MMA fighter. Everyone knows what you’re going to get when you get me (holding up fists). I might set it up with some kicks, I might push you around a bit, but this is what you’re going to get (holding up fists again). That is a testament to the fighter who’s getting in there saying, ‘I’m not coming in with no secrets, my this is better than all of your that.'”
Normally, fighters with three professional fights are not given top billing. But Hardy’s stellar boxing career makes her an exception. Still, Hardy needs to pinch herself sometimes.
“Sometimes I don’t even believe it’s my life, like when I came in and saw this big picture [of me], I was like, ‘I gotta show my mom!’ It’s surreal.”
Heather Hardy still doesn’t have an opponent lined up though, and she won’t be involved in the matchmaking process.
“I don’t bother with it. My management and Bellator, they talk back-and-forth and they do the thing. I’m confident that they’ll give me somebody and I’ll be fine.”
Hardy wasn’t too pleased with her last fight, despite getting the victory, due to the prevalence of the ground exchanges. Whichever opponent she gets, she hopes for a more exciting fight this time around.
“Well it’s funny, the last one was a professional boxer and we wound up rolling around on the ground the whole time. That’s the thing about MMA, you never really know what you’re going to get. So you had two fighters doing boring jiu-jitsu. Hopefully this time it’ll be something better. Keep this fight on the feet.”
Bellator 222 takes place on June 14 exclusively on DAZN from Madison Square Garden.