A verbal feud between Dan Hardy and Marcus Davis has culminated in an official bout between the two being scheduled for UFC 99 in Cologne, Germany on June 13.
FiveOuncesOfPain.com learned of the matches formal scheduling for the event from a source close to the fight.
The war of words began soon after Hardy’s first round knockout victory over Rory Markham during last month’s UFC 95 event in London, England.
During a post-fight press conference for the event, Hardy called into question Davis’ penchant for playing up his Irish roots.
“… He’s had a couple of fights in the UK, and he’s kind of building himself a fan base, but he’s not English; he’s not Irish,” said Hardy. “I was born here, and I’ve been bred here. I don’t mind taking on that challenge and showing him this is my home and not his.”
Davis responded to the comments in an exclusive interview with MMAjunkie.com and stated that he’s tired of his tribute to his Irish heritage being constantly called into question.
“I’m getting sick and tired of everyone saying I’m a fake Irishman or a fake this and fake that,” he told Junkie. “I never told anybody I was an Irishman. What I am is proud of my heritage, which is Irish, Welsh and Scottish.
“It’s OK for Oscar De La Hoya, who wasn’t born in Mexico, to embrace his Mexican heritage. Or it’s OK for all the African-Americans here in America to embrace their African heritage. But if you’re a white guy and you embrace any of your European heritage, you’re an idiot.”
Never one to back down from a challenge, Davis didn’t hesitate to campaign for the fight.
“I went up to (UFC matchmaker) Joe Silva and I said, ‘Joe, make this fight,’ he said. “I want this fight. This kid’s running his mouth.’”
It appears Davis’ stumping paid off, as sources indicate that the UFC was originally planning to make a match at UFC 99 involving Davis and welterweight prospect Ben Saunders. However, the public feud caused the promotion to change directions. Saunders will instead face Mike Swick at UFC 99 while Davis and Hardy will get a chance to settle their differences on the same card.
UFC 99 will emanate from the Lanxess Arena and will feature former PRIDE middleweight champion Wanderlei Silva taking on former UFC middleweight champion Rich Franklin.
In addition to the main event and the welterweight matches between Davis vs. Hardy and Swick vs. Saunders, other reported matchups include Caol Uno vs. Spencer Fisher, Cain Velasquez vs. Heath Herring, Alessio Sakara vs. Alan Belcher, Stefan Struve vs. Denis Stojnic, Paul Taylor vs. Peter Sobotta, and Todd Duffee vs. Mustapha al Turk.