Former UFC welterweight title challenger and commentator, Dan Hardy, was critical of the current state of MMA officiating.
Hardy spoke with MMA journalist Ariel Helwani on the latest edition of The MMA Hour and stated his concern with the lack of consistently quality officiating across the sport. He specifically talked about longtime veteran referee Herb Dean's recent track record. The two had an infamous incident back at UFC Fight Island 3 that ultimately led to Hardy being fired by the promotion.
“My main focus is the fighters getting protection, and he’s still present at regular events and he’s still making mistakes consistently,” Hardy said (h/t MMA Fighting). “He still waves off the fights at the end of the round. He still doesn’t know exactly what he’s doing. It concerns me. It really does, because at some point, our sport is going to be negatively affected by someone not doing their job, and we’re all going to be impacted by that, and we’re all going to be saddened by it. This weekend was a good example of that. We were close to it. Brian Ortega [at UFC 266], same situation. None of these people are going to be there in 15 or 20 years when these guys can’t remember their kids’ names. That’s the thing we have to not forget.”