‘A**HOLE!’ UFC fans express disgust as Greg Hardy disqualified for illegal knee to head
Hardy came into the contest looking to continue the undefeated start to his professional mixed martial arts career and register a big win on his octagon debut.
But he found himself dragged into deep waters by a gritty performance from Crowder, who survived an early onslaught from Hardy and took him into the second round for the first time in his career.Also on rt.com UFC Brooklyn as it happened: Relive Henry Cejudo's quickfire win over TJ Dillashaw
And after Hardy stuffed a Crowder takedown attempt, the former NFL star connected with a huge knee on the grounded fighter, who clearly had one knee down on the canvas.
It forced referee Dan Miragliotta to stop the contest and disqualify Hardy when it became apparent Crowder was in no position to continue.
And fans and media queued up on social media to criticize Hardy after his disqualification defeat.
Sports reporter Jon Alba tweeted: "Hopefully, that's the last we see of Greg Hardy in #UFC octagon. Embarrassing."
The media in the arena reported that the crowd showed their disgust at Hardy's actions by chanting: "Asshole!" at him as he left the octagon following his controversial fight.
Reporter Drea Blackwell was notably unsurprised, tweeting: "Greg Hardy did something trashy? Imagine that."
Greg Hardy did something trashy? Imagine that.— Drea Blackwell (@KSBWDrea) January 20, 2019
Tweeter @MacMallyMMA took aim at Hardy's past when he tweeted: "Greg Hardy just said he didn't know the shots he landed on his ex girlfriend were illegal, either."
And pro basketball player Kyle Weems said: "How ironic is it that Greg Hardy broke one of like 4 rules in the UFC tonight in his fight? Dude can't even get legal fighting right! Lol Smh."
How ironic is it that Greg Hardy broke one of like 4 rules in the UFC tonight in his fight? Dude can’t even get legal fighting right! Lol Smh— Kyle Weems (@Kjw3434) January 20, 2019
Hardy's inclusion in the co-main event bout in Brooklyn was a highly controversial one before the contest even started.
The former NFL star was found guilty of domestic violence offenses, but had the charges dropped after his alleged victim refused to testify in the appeal.
The incident cost him his successful NFL career with the Dallas Cowboys, and saw him transition to mixed martial arts.
He competed twice in Dana White's Tuesday Night Contender Series and impressed with two huge quickfire knockouts and, for better or worse, White has thrown his support behind a rehabilitated Hardy as he looks to continue his athletic career in a new sport.
But his instant elevation to a co-main event slot on such a high-profile card raised eyebrows, and his lack of development as an MMA fighter was questioned by many on Twitter, with journalist Kevin Clark saying: "Greg Hardy got disqualified and he is also--and don't lose sight of this part--not good at mixed martial arts."
Greg Hardy got disqualified and he is also--and don't lose sight of this part--not good at mixed martial arts.— Kevin Clark (@bykevinclark) January 20, 2019
But regardless of his lack of well-defined MMA skills, the shadow of his past loomed large over Hardy, and that controversial reputation wasn't helped by his actions in the fight against Crowder, as his illegal knee strike led to his disqualification and yet more negative headlines for one of the UFC's most controversial athletes.