Rachael Ostovich approves of Greg Hardy competing on the same UFC card in January

The primary attention directed at UFC on Wednesday was not centered around the press conference for the upcoming UFC 231 fight card on Saturday. Rather, the focus was on news breaking earlier in the day that former NFL lineman and accused domestic abuser Greg Hardy would be making his promotional debut on the same card on Jan. 19 as Rachael Ostovich. Ostovich, who's set to face Paige VanZant on the show that will also serve as the promotion's debut on ESPN+, is an alleged victim domestic violence that temporarily put her scheduled fight in jeopardy because of injuries suffered in an incident with her husband. 

Most expected White to address the matter at the presser on Wednesday, and while he didn't, he did take the time to speak about the decision during an interview on Thursday with TSN's Aaron Bronsteter. When pegged about the booking, White revealed that he had placed a call to Ostovich, and she was "totally cool" with the decision that was made. 

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"I called Rachael Ostovich and talked to her and walked her through this situation," White said. "And her take on it was, 'His story isn't my story. Everybody's story is different, and I believe in second chances. I have no problem fighting on the same card as this guy.'

"He didn't do anything to Rachael Ostovich. She was totally cool with it. Obviously, having her support was a key factor in making that decision."

A short time after the interview aired, not only did Ostovich give her seal of approval to White's comments on Twitter, but she also sent a text to Bronsteter confirming that everything the UFC president had stated was correct. 

It's may be semi-reassuring to some that approvals are being thrown around regarding this situation -- but the fact remains that validation shouldn't be necessary to begin with. No matter what defenses are given, this was an incredibly tone-deaf decision by the UFC brass, and no amount of explanations can change that. 

In addition to Ostovich taking on VanZant and Hardy making his debut, the inaugural ESPN+ UFC card on Jan. 19 in Brooklyn will reportedly be headlined by a champion vs. champion superfight pitting bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw against flyweight champion Henry Cejudo for the 125-pound belt. 

Jack joined CBS Sports in 2018 as an editor and writer covering college football, combat sports and golf. He was raised to love the New York Yankees unconditionally since birth and firmly believes a four-team... Full Bio

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