When Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy talked to the media at training camp following his conviction on assault charges, there was a noticeable lack of remorse, only saying he hated being a distraction to the team, and joking with reporters for supporting him.
And rather than distance himself from the situation revolving around his assault of a former girlfriend, it keeps circling around.
Via David Newton of ESPN.com, in the area of the practice field reserved for family and special guests at Panthers camp yesterday was Laura Iwanicki, who testified in Hardy’s defense at his trial.
Iwanicki was a nightclub co-worker of Hardy’s former girlfriend, Nicole Holder. During the trial, Iwanicki said she was an occasional companion of Hardy’s personal assistant. She also pleaded the fifth when asked if she used cocaine with Holder the night of the assault.
She also took a photo of the futon covered with guns that Hardy was accused of throwing his girlfriend onto, and said: “I thought it was strange. I’d never seen guns like that.”
Hardy has appealed, and his jury trial is scheduled for Nov. 17.
After practice, she chatted with a number of players.
On its face, her presence there was a minor distraction — as attractive women in sundresses at a football practice occasionally will be.
But Hardy’s inability to distance himself from the situation, or even acknowledge that he might have done something untoward, makes it clear why the Panthers never even hinted at signing the franchise-tagged pass-rusher to a long-term deal before or after the arrest.