Dan Hardy issues statement on confrontation with Herb Dean: “When a referee makes a mistake, people are vulnerable”

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UFC commentator Dan Hardy was one of the most talked about fighters after Saturday’s UFC on ESPN 14.

At the end of a preliminary fight between Francisco Trinaldo and Jai Herbert, Hardy could be heard on the show yelling at referee Herb Dean to stop the fight after Trinaldo landed a punch on Herbert that left the UFC newcomer flat on his back. Hardy’s reaction was due to Dean not immediately stopping the fight and waiting for Trinaldo to land a few follow-up shots before officially canceling it.

Afterwards, Hardy and Dean were seen chatting at the commentator’s office, although the details of that conversation are not known at this time.

Hardy posted a post to Instagram on Sunday in which he addressed his issues with Dean’s arbitration, although he did not name Dean in the post.

See this post on Instagram

I love mixed martial arts. Sometimes that doesn’t like me back, and that’s good. Either way, I will always do everything in my power to protect it, and those who are dedicated to it. Sometimes you can disagree with me, and that’s okay too. I will always say what I think, and it will always be supported by what I feel in my heart. If you understand what it takes to get in, then you understand my passion and anger when I see a fighter left unprotected. This is not the first time this has happened, and twice a night is gross negligence, in my opinion. The work of the referees is more important than anyone else in this building. It is on their shoulders to protect fighters from serious injury when they are unable to protect themselves. You can just see UFC fighters in there, but I see friends, teammates, sons, daughters, mothers and fathers, competing in the sport they love. When I make a mistake I look stupid on live TV. When a referee makes a mistake, people are vulnerable and can be seriously damaged. It can be life changing, and we all have someone to come home to, who loves us and wants us again in one piece. Thanks for all the kind words and messages I received. I am truly grateful. I’ll see you everywhere… ♥ ️ —————— ‍☠️Outlaw ‍☠️ —————— – @jeffbottari

A post shared by Dan Hardy (@danhardymma) on

“I love mixed martial arts,” Hardy wrote. “Sometimes it doesn’t like me back, and that’s okay. Either way, I will always do everything in my power to protect it, and those who are dedicated to it.

Hardy described Dean’s decision making on Saturday as “obvious negligence” and also took offense with the stoppage of the Tanner Boser-Raphael Pessoa fight that Dean also oversaw.

“The referee’s job is more important than anyone else in this building,” Hardy wrote. “The onus is on their shoulders to protect fighters from serious injury when they are unable to protect themselves.

“You can just see UFC fighters in there, but I see friends, teammates, sons, daughters, mothers and fathers, competing in the sport they love. “

One of the UFC’s most seasoned officials, Dean has been criticized over the years for being inconsistent with his saves, whether it’s because they’re judged too early or too late by outside observers. Dean has also received accolades in the past for his work and continues to be awarded high profile fights in the UFC, including Saturday’s main event between Robert Whittaker and Darren Till.

Regardless of Dean’s past good faith, Hardy did nothing to voice his opinion on his work last night.

“When I make a mistake, I look stupid on live TV,” Hardy said. “When a referee makes a mistake, people are vulnerable and can be seriously damaged. It can be life changing, and we all have someone to come home to, who loves us and wants us again in one piece.

Read Hardy’s full, unedited statement below:

I love mixed martial arts. Sometimes that doesn’t like me back, and that’s good. Either way, I will always do everything in my power to protect it, and those who are dedicated to it.

Sometimes you can disagree with me, and that’s okay too. I will always say what I think, and it will always be supported by what I feel in my heart.

If you understand what it takes to get in, then you understand my passion and anger when I see a fighter left unprotected. This is not the first time this has happened, and twice a night is gross negligence, in my opinion.

The referee’s job is more important than anyone else in this building. It is on their shoulders to protect fighters from serious injury when they are unable to protect themselves.

You can just see UFC fighters in there, but I see friends, teammates, sons, daughters, mothers and fathers, competing in the sport they love.

When I make a mistake I look stupid on live TV. When a referee makes a mistake, people are vulnerable and can be seriously damaged. It can be life changing, and we all have someone to come home to, who loves us and wants us again in one piece.

Thanks for all the kind words and messages I received. I am truly grateful. I will see you everywhere …



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