Dallas Cowboys’ defensive end Greg Hardy was suspended for four games this season after he “was found guilty of assaulting his ex-girlfriend, Nicole Holder, and threatening to kill her.”
Hardy was accused of throwing Holder onto a bed covered with guns, including “four semiautomatic rifles.” He also allegedly “dragged her by her hair from room to room, shoved her against a wall and put his hands around her neck, applying enough pressure to leave visible marks.”
The charges were later dropped when Holder, who settled a potential civil case against Hardy, decided not to testify and could not be found by police and prosecutors.
Hardy is set to make his return to the NFL this week and began with this quote:
Greg Hardy: I hope I come out guns blazin’. Im full of excitement and full of juice. I’m ready to go. I have what they call fresh legs.
— Clarence Hill Jr (@clarencehilljr) October 6, 2015
He then had this to say about Tom Brady:
Greg Hardy on facing Brady: "I love seeing Tom Brady. You seen his wife? I hope she comes to the game. I hope her sister comes to the game."
— Brandon George (@DMN_George) October 6, 2015
Katie Nolan, who hosts Garbage Time on FOX Sports, delivered a devastating critique on Wednesday night — not only of Hardy, but of the complicity of the NFL and the media.
— Garbage Time (@GarbageTime) October 8, 2015
Rachel Nichols, a CNN sports reporter, was also harshly critical of Hardy’s conduct: “What’s the opposite of contrition?” Nichols also pressed NFL commissioner Roger Goodell about Hardy’s comments during a press conference on Wednesday. Goodell wouldn’t comment on Hardy directly, instead saying, “the vast majority of NFL players are outstanding young men.”
ThinkProgress’ Lindsay Gibbs took an intensive look at what the NFL has done on the issue of domestic violence since the infamous video of Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice knocking his then-fiancee unconscious was released last year. She found that while the NFL has spent millions of dollars on the issue, the league lacks a comprehensive strategy.
Hardy is an example of the league’s dysfunctional and arbitrary discipline policy. All of the power resides with Goodell, with few enforceable standards. As a result, “almost all of Goodell’s high-profile suspensions have been overturned.” In Hardy’s case, his initial 10 game suspension was reduced to four games on appeal, which the Cowboys seemed more than happy to accept. (Hardy is one of the Cowboys’ best players.)
Told of Hardy’s recent comments to the media, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones defended his star. “We all know that’s just a way of expressing yourself. I hope his guns are ablazin’,” Jones said.