Hardy (5-1) made quick work of Adams (5-2) at UFC Fight Night on Saturday inside AT&T Center in San Antonio. A former Division I collegiate wrestler, Adams tried to take Hardy down in the opening minute, but Hardy defended the initial shot and landed a string of hammerfists to the side of Adams' head.
The heavyweight bout was waved off just 45 seconds in, when it became apparent Adams was not responding to the shots. Hardy, 30, improved to 2-1 in the UFC. His only loss came via disqualification for an illegal blow against Allen Crowder in January.
"I want to thank Juan Adams, no matter what he said about me," Hardy said. "He was a great opponent, but it's always 'The Prince of War,' baby.
"Everybody wants to get me on the ground. I want everybody to know that calling out my name comes with consequences. And taking me down comes with consequences."
Adams, 27, had repeatedly said he did not think Hardy was UFC-caliber. He also claimed to "hate" the former NFL defensive lineman, and started a hashtag online titled "#F---GregHardy."
Hardy has been a controversial figure for the UFC, ever since the promotion signed him to a developmental deal last year. Off-field issues including convictions for domestic violence (later expunged from his record) and drug possession contributed to the end of his NFL career.
The former Pro Bowler began training mixed martial arts full-time in 2016, and the results have been good so far. All five of his professional wins have come via first-round knockout. He trains out of American Top Team in South Florida, one of the top MMA camps in the world.
Adams fell to 1-2 in the UFC.
Harris stuns Oleinik in quick KO
The knockout finish came courtesy of a flying knee, into a left hand that landed on the button. Oleinik went down hard from the left hand and the bout was quickly called off. It was the third-fastest heavyweight knockout in UFC history.
"We worked on that for 15 weeks," Harris said. "We knew he liked to dip his head and change levels. We just wanted to throw something up the middle to make him hesitant. It landed, and then [the left hand] right here is a monster. I'm telling you. It's different."
Harris, of Homewood, Alabama, has now finished back-to-back opponents inside the first round. He knocked out Sergey Spivak in 50 seconds in May.
Harris: Left-handed TKO vs. Oleinik was 'a monster!'
Walt Harris says his TKO victory vs. Aleksei Oleinik feels "amazing," and the left-handed jab he landed is "just different" than anyone else's. For more UFC, sign up here for ESPN+ http://plus.espn.com/ufc.
Hooker snaps streak of decisions with highlight KO
Hooker, of New Zealand, floored Vick with a beautiful left hook to the chin, and then finished him off with one perfectly placed follow-up right hand. Referee Kerry Hatley stopped the bout at the 2:33 mark. It was the 10th knockout win of Hooker's career, and it came against one of Texas' own in Vick.
"Respect to James Vick," Hooker said. "I trained the hardest I've ever trained in my life for this fight, because I know you don't mess with Texas. I came prepared."
It's a huge rebound for Hooker, who took a memorable amount of damage in his last fight against Edson Barboza in December. Vick, 32, now faces a crossroads of sorts at lightweight. He has dropped three in a row, including two first-round knockouts.
Hernandez claims win at home
According to ESPN's FightCenter, Hernandez landed just 20 strikes in the entire bout. Trinaldo did not fare much better with 24. Hernandez looked to utilize the outside and keep Trinaldo guessing, but he was hesitant to engage and maintained a very healthy distance between himself and Trinaldo the entire fight. All three judges gave the fight to Hernandez: 30-27, 30-27 and 29-28.
Trinaldo, 40, appeared content to counter Hernandez with left hands any time he did come into range. The Brazilian opened a cut under Hernandez's left eye with a spinning kick in the second round, but found offense hard to come by otherwise.
Regardless of how it looked, it's a nice bounce-back for Hernandez. The 26-year-old suffered a second-round knockout loss to Donald Cerrone his last time out, in a high-profile spot in January.
Arlovski beats up Rothwell, but settles for decision
Heavyweight veteran Andrei Arlovski (28-18) dominated Ben Rothwell (36-12) over the course of three rounds, in a rematch of a bout that took place 11 years ago. All three judges scored it a shutout for Arlovski, 30-27.
Arlovski, 40, picked Rothwell apart with the jab and boxing combinations. He bloodied Rothwell's nose in the opening round and continued to target the big man's face throughout the 15-minute affair. According to ESPN's FightCenter, Arlovski landed 73 of 219 attempted strikes, 172 of which targeted the head.
Rothwell, 37, is known for his durability, however. And despite the sustained beating he took, Rothwell nearly pulled off a miracle in the final minute, as he hurt a tired Arlovski with a left hook to the chin. Arlovski managed to go back to his jab and then clinch with Rothwell to get to the end of the bout.
Arlovski picked up his first win in his past four contests. Rothwell continues to search for his first win since 2016. This is Arlovski's 17th heavyweight win in the UFC. That's the most in the division's history. He moved past Frank Mir, who has 16.
Arlovski and Rothwell slug it out at the end of Round 3
Andrei Arlovski and Ben Rothwell each land heavy hits in the third round. For more UFC, sign up here for ESPN+ http://plus.espn.com/ufc.
Caceres overcomes hand injury, takes decision
Caceres, 31, earned the win despite apparently breaking his left hand in the first round. He told his corner about the injury prior to the third. Even without his best weapon, the veteran southpaw matched Peterson's striking output on the feet. According to ESPN's FightCenter, Caceres landed 63 strikes. Peterson landed 66.
The judges must have felt Caceres' strikes caused more damage, however. Caceres did open a cut on Peterson's forehead in the first round, and he frequently forced Peterson to miss with good head movement and footwork on the outside. Caceres, who trains out of Glendale, Arizona, has now alternated wins and losses in his past six bouts.
Peterson locks Caceres in body triangle
Steven Peterson wrestles Alex Caceres to the ground and locks him in a body triangle in an attempt to get a submission finish. For more UFC, sign up here for ESPN+ http://plus.espn.com/ufc.
Pennington slips past Aldana in split decision
Pennington, of Colorado Springs, Colorado, landed a hard right hand in the second round -- arguably the hardest strike of the fight -- before turning to her wrestling in the third frame. Aldana went for several failed submissions in the final minutes, which might have cost her on the cards, as Pennington scored with hammerfists. Two judges awarded the fight to Pennington 29-28, while a third saw it 29-28 for Aldana.
The loss snaps a three-fight win streak for Aldana, who fights out of Guadalajara, Mexico. Pennington, who has fought only three times since 2017, picks up her first win since she defeated Miesha Tate in a high-profile bout at UFC 205 in New York.
Pennington, Aldana exchange punches to end 2nd round
In the closing moments of the second round, Raquel Pennington and Irene Aldana exchange a flurry of blows up against the cage. For more UFC, sign up here for ESPN+ http://plus.espn.com/ufc.
Abreu earns first UFC win
Alvey, 33, appeared to be stunned by the judges' scores, which all read in Abreu's favor, 30-27, 30-27 and 29-28. ESPN also scored the bout 30-27 for Abreu. He closed the opening round with several hard punches, including one that appeared to come after the bell. He landed a jumping knee in the second frame and some good leg kicks in the third. Alvey struggled to string together much in return.
Abreu signed with the UFC earlier this year. He suffered a three-round decision loss to Magomed Ankalaev in February, in his promotional debut.
Abreu unloads on Alvey to end 1st round
Kidson Farias de Abreu unloads a flurry of punches to daze Sam Alvey at the end of the first round. For more UFC, sign up here for ESPN+ http://plus.espn.com/ufc.
Maia cruises to decision against Modafferi
This week offered a bittersweet result for Maia, as she failed to make weight for the 125-pound bout on Friday. Maia missed by three pounds and forfeited 30 percent of her purse as a result. The cut did not seem to impact her performance, however, as she stuffed all of Modafferi's attempts to get it to the floor and outstruck her on the feet.
A former Invicta FC champion, Maia, 30, is now 2-1 in the UFC. This also marked her second win against Modafferi. She defeated her via split decision in 2016.
Maia catches Modafferi with powerful right
Jennifer Maia lands a powerful right hand across the face of Roxanne Modafferi. For more UFC, sign up here for ESPN+ http://plus.espn.com/ufc.
Borg scores first win in more than two years
All three judges scored the 135-pound bout 29-28 for Borg. It was a very meaningful win for Borg, who has managed three appearances in the last two years due to a variety of issues, including his infant son Anthony's battles with a life-threatening brain condition.
"It's been a long road," Borg said. "My boy is somewhere in the building. I'm back, baby."
The performance was vintage Borg, as he simply outworked Silva in several key positional scrambles. He took Silva down in the second and third rounds and hunted a rear-naked choke from the back position, although he was unable to secure a finish. Still only 25, Borg improves to 6-4 in the UFC.
Borg ferociously slams Silva
Ray Borg gets Gabriel Silva against the cage then raises Silva up to bring him down to the mat with a thunderous slam. For more UFC, sign up here for ESPN+ http://plus.espn.com/ufc.
Bautista upsets Son in slugfest
Judges scored the bout for Bautista 30-27, 30-27 and 29-28. The MMA Lab fighter ate a good number of shots himself in the 15-minute contest, but his standup caused far more damage and he dominated the clinch exchanges with elbows to the head.
Bautista, 26, improves to 1-1 in the Octagon. He lost his UFC debut to the surging Cory Sandhagen in January.
Bautista drops Son with strong right hand
After exchanging a flurry of blows, Mario Bautista drops Jin Soo Son in Round 2 after connecting with a strong right hand. For more UFC, sign up here for ESPN+ http://plus.espn.com/ufc.
Colares holds off late rally, hangs on for split decision
Brazilian bantamweight Felipe Colares (9-1) staved off a late choke attempt en route to a narrow split decision over Domingo Pilarte (8-2). Two judges scored it for Colares 29-28, while a third had it for Pilarte 29-28. The victory is Colares' first in the UFC.
Colares controlled the first two rounds with takedowns and ground-and-pound. Pilarte came back strong in the third frame and threatened to finish with a rear-naked choke. Colares grimaced in the final seconds of the round as Pilarte applied the choke, but ultimately survived and took home the win.
Pilarte catches Colares with an elbow
Domingo Pilarte puts pressure on Felipe Colares up against the cage and catches him with a shot to the gut and a powerful elbow to the face. For more UFC, sign up here for ESPN+ http://plus.espn.com/ufc.