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Eddie Goldman is the host and producer of the No Holds Barred international podcast, the publisher of the No Holds Barred blog, and a senior contributing editor at the ADCC News.

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    Friday, January 03, 2014

    No Holds Barred: Raul Ramirez on Catch Wrestling in 2014 

    On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman spoke with our correspondent Raul Ramirez of the Catch Wrestling Alliance.

    Based in the Los Angeles, California, area, and working with the Snake Pit Wigan in the U.K., which is the home of catch-as-catch-can wrestling, he has set his sights on hosting a major international catch wrestling event this year in Los Angeles.

    We spoke with Raul Ramirez by phone Wednesday, New Year's Day.

    "Everyone who's involved with catch wrestling, it's their dream to really help revive it as a real, maybe even professional sport, hearken back to the glory days of catch wrestling," he said.

    "So basically this past year I've been working hard with the Snake Pit Wigan and reaching out to other people in the United States who have been involved with catch wrestling for a long time. A lot of them want to work together to try to provide wrestlers for a big event that we plan on having, most likely June of this year."

    Many of the details of this event are yet to be finalized, but the basic rules of catch wrestling will be in place: you can only win by pin or submission.

    Among the many issues facing catch wrestling as it is being revived is governance. The building of regional, national, and international infrastructures is already taking place, with the hopes of holding events to determine credible national and world champions "who earned" these titles. At the same time, he also stressed the need to guard against corruption. This is what killed real professional catch wrestling a century ago, when it completely degenerated and left the realm of sport.

    At this point, this Catch Wrestling Alliance event is planned to be held on the campus of UCLA in Los Angeles, where many sumo wrestling and jiu-jitsu events have taken place. Wrestlers will be invited from several countries, including some of those who have competed at the Snake Pit Wigan's annual International Catch Wrestling Tournaments.

    The aim, he said, is "a real international event."

    We also discussed why catch wrestling has as its basics the fundamentals of wrestling; possible different rule sets which include or exclude chokeholds; other catch wrestling events already planned for 2014, including the Virginia Shooter's Challenge, which is the North American Catch Wrestling Association's regional qualifier, on April 5 in Amherst, Virginia; the eventual need for an international federation to govern catch wrestling; and much more.

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