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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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    Monday, March 03, 2014

    No Holds Barred: Robert Drenk of the Ultimate Armwrestling League 

    On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman spoke with Robert Drenk, the founder of the Ultimate Armwrestling League (UAL).

    "The Ultimate Armwrestling League is the premier arm wrestling league in the United States of America," he said in this interview, which was recorded by phone Saturday. "What we are is an organization with contacts to over 1000 professional arm wrestlers in the United States of America and outside the United States of America."

    He continued, "What we are is an organized sports league with athletes that come to compete in tournaments and eventually become signed contracted athletes and have an opportunity at really big prize money and title belts doing ultimate matchups, which are one-on-one events, the best of the best."

    Arm wrestling has gotten a lot of publicity of late with the start of an unscripted series about the sport on the AMC network in the U.S., called "Game of Arms". The debut show on February 25 drew over one million viewers, which AMC called the highest number for a debut of any of their unscripted shows on their network. Although that show has received criticism for, like other so-called "reality" shows, distorting the reality of arm wrestling, it still has ignited a discussion about the sport and increased interest in it widely.

    Although the UAL is not involved with this show, Robert Drenk noted its impact on the sport.

    "I think this is a huge year for arm wrestling," he said. "I think if we can't make something happen in arm wrestling this year, then I don't think arm wrestling's ever going to happen. And I'm a firm believer that this is going to be the year for arm wrestling."

    We also discussed the growth of professional arm wrestling, the structure of UAL events, their plans for their UAL 7 event in May at a location to be announced, their plans for the future, the training their athletes do, how he got involved with professional arm wrestling, and much more.

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