In the 1990s, the USWF ran a series of successful events, mainly in Amarillo, Texas, using shoot wrestling rules which allowed open-handed strikes, submissions, kicks, and knees. In essence, it was a real style of pro wrestling, having been derived from the worked style seen in Japan in companies like the UWFi. Steve Nelson, who had wrestled at Oklahoma State, won two world silver medals in sambo, had a judo background, came from a family of pro wrestlers, and fought in MMA, had also participated in UWFi and trained in real catch wrestling prior to founding the USWF. Steve is also the longtime head wrestling coach for both the boy's and girls' wrestling teams at Palo Duro High School in Amarillo.
We spoke with Steve by phone Monday afternoon about the history of the USWF and the lessons from it which we can utilize today. He explained how he positioned the USWF to be a real sport which promoted the athletes as role models and not trash-talkers. We discussed with Steve why the USWF produced such exciting events, including his historic rematch with Ralph Gracie at USWF 11 on August, 22, 1998, a great fight which earned Fight of the Year honors.
We also discussed the potential for a revival of real catch wrestling, what it must do to become popular once again, who would be its initial base of fans and participants, and more.
The videos from the USWF shows are also available on DVD on the USWF web site
You can play or download No Holds Barred here
. You can also download No Holds Barred here
. If one link does not work, please try another. The show is in MP3 format, so may take some time to download.
No Holds Barred is also available on mobile phones and iPads through Stitcher
Also, No Holds Barred is available through iTunes
The No Holds Barred theme song is called "The Heist", by Ian Carpenter
No Holds Barred is free to listen to and is sponsored by:
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American Top Team
. Whether you're a beginner or a champion, train with the champions in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, boxing, wrestling, grappling, and mixed martial arts at American Top Team. Check out their web site at http://americantopteam.com/
The American Sambo Association
, which is committed to becoming the premier association in the U.S. dedicated to the advancement of Sambo. Sambo is a form of sport, self-defense, and combat established in the former Soviet Union during the early twentieth century. For more information, go to ussambo.com