After a rough 2021 campaign, Hardy (7-4 MMA, 4-4 UFC) can seek a better start to 2022 when he meets Oleinik (59-15-1 MMA, 8-6 UFC) in a heavyweight bout on the UFC’s Jan. 22 pay-per-view card – likely to be UFC 270.
MMA Junkie confirmed the matchup with several people familiar with the matter. Because the UFC has yet not made an official announcement, people asked for anonymity.
Hardy is a controversial ex-NFL standout who has lost to Marcin Tybura and Tai Tuivasa in knockouts in the past two bouts. The 33-year-old began his MMA career in June 2018, and will be at a massive experience disadvantage to Oleinik, who had his first documented contest in 1996.
Oleinik, 44, is in desparate need of a win as well. His split decision win over Fabricio Wardum at UFC in May 2020. has left him on a three-fight losing streak.
The latest UFC lineup includes: