In my opinion Dan Hardy easily carries the Chris Leben banner of the 170 pound division. That guy who entertains everyone, and every now again starts to make some waves, until he crashes... but no bad really comes of that, cause when the crash happens you have a new contender (See Brian Stann).
In a division rich with great wrestlers, you're going to need guys like Dan. Even if he is only fighting new guys to see what they are made of, or taking on vets like Chris Lytle in those guaranteed "fight of the night" matches.
Plain and simple:
Entertaining (more so then most of the divisions top talents)
full of heart
and incredibly easy to market.
Despite these three losses the guy will get cheered in his next fight, I promise you that.