Greg Hardy is a scumbag. But by now we should all know that.
I know it. Anyone who has seen the photos of Nicole Holder’s injuries knows it.
Your neighbor with the Cowboys flag in his front yard knows it. And you would think the fans who cheered the Cowboys at AT&T Stadium on Sunday know it.
But as Jeff Van Gundy wondered on the ESPN telecast of the Mavericks-Clippers game Wednesday night, where are the boos for Greg Hardy?
Local fans should be fully aware of the back story. The Los Angeles Clippers’ DeAndre Jordan reneged on an NBA free-agent agreement with Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban in cowardly fashion.
The game Wednesday was the first for local fans to “welcome” Jordan back to Texas. The American Airlines Center audience booed him lustily all night long.
Gundy’s take: “I have no problem with him changing his mind. That’s man’s greatest right, his right to change his mind.
“I do have a problem with him not directly contacting Mark Cuban to tell him about his change of mind.
“I would also like Dallas fans to acknowledge the sheer lunacy and absurdity that they’re booing DeAndre Jordan tonight, and they’ll be cheering someone like Greg Hardy on Sunday. That, to me, is absurd.
“All this guy did was change his mind.”
Ouch. And touché!
Van Gundy makes a great point, but it’s not about DeAndre Jordan. An NBA team’s off-season transactions are serious business. Treating them, as Jordan did, in a cavalier and/or juvenile manner deserves whatever scorn the offended fan base thinks he should get.
I was at Wednesday’s game. The fans were outstanding. If I may offer a firsthand historical perspective, the booing was much more meaningful and venomous than Kiki Vandeweghe ever got.
But I was at Sunday’s Cowboys-Eagles game, and I heard the cheers for Hardy, too.
Different games, different fan bases. I get all that. Probably different amounts of alcohol consumed by the paying customers as well.
But Hardy is a scumbag. We all should know that.
In front of NFL investigators in March, as outlined in a report by Deadspin, com, Hardy attempted to paint a story of Holder being the aggressor that night and with most of her injuries being either imagined or self-sustained. He and his attorneys also tried to make an issue of Holder’s alleged promiscuous behavior.
Lawyers will be lawyers. They have their own mirrors that they have to stare into.
But in the court of public opinion, the lawyers need to just shut up once a verdict is rendered. The public shall have its say.
Yet, here was Hardy’s new profile on Twitter last week, “Innocent until proven guilty — lack of knowledge & information is just ignorance — the unjust/prejudicial treatment of diff categories of people is discrimination.”
So let me get this straight. Hardy was trying to use the courageous fight for social justice in our nation — Dr. Martin Luther King; Selma, Ala.; Ferguson, Mo., and so on — and liken it to his physical assault on a woman in 2014?
So he’s a scumbag and an idiot.
As Hardy seems to have forgotten, he was found guilty by North Carolina District Judge Rebecca Thorne Tin. Yes, his appeal of the domestic violence conviction was thrown out when Holder could not be found to testify.
But as Holder previously told the court, she was afraid that Hardy, who displayed an array of weapons at the apartment that night, was going to kill her. Prosecuting attorneys said that Holder reached a financial agreement with Hardy to disappear and not testify in the appeals hearing. The money, plus the fear for her life, must have led Holder to comply.
That’s a far easier account to believe than Hardy’s about her stumbling into the bathtub.
We have all heard Owner Jones’ and coach Jason Garrett’s replies — meek and rehearsed — when asked about Hardy. Jones is aging and desperate for one last Super Bowl glory ride. But Garrett’s compliance is disappointing.
If you’re a Cowboys fan, though, your only obligation on Hardy should be to your conscience, not the souvenir jersey you wear. Hardy’s continued presence tarnishes the Cowboys’ image daily.
If you’re cheering that, Jeff Van Gundy was entirely right.
Gil LeBreton: 817-390-7697, email@example.com, @gilebreton