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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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Saturday, December 20, 2014

No Holds Barred: Luis Ojeda on Jan. 11 King of Catch Wrestling and No Gi Submission Only Grappling Tournament 




On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman once again spoke with catch wrestler and wrestling coach Luis Ojeda.

He will help kick off 2015 for catch wrestling by helping to run the West Coast King of Catch Wrestling Tournament and No Gi Submission Only Grappling Tournament.

This event takes place Sunday, January 11, 2015, at San Ysidro High School at 5353 Airway Road, San Diego, California 92154, where he also serves as wrestling coach.

We spoke with Luis Ojeda by phone Monday.

Explaining how this event was set up, he said, "I saw this opportunity. I talked to my athletic director. We had lost another tournament that we were going do for the wrestling team, usually our big fundraiser. There was a conflict with basketball. I was like, 'Hey, why don't we do a King of Catch?'"

He got approval, and added, "I pitched the idea of doing a King of Catch and a grappling tournament, and it seems to be coming together."

We also discussed the California Catch Wrestling Association Test Tournament organized by that newly-formed group, which takes place Sunday, December 21, at Brea Olinda High School, 789 Wildcat Way, Brea, CA 92821.

We went over the rules for each of these events, the upcoming competitions in California in the Swiss folkstyle wrestling known as Schwingen, plans for his next catch wrestling match following his victory in August when he won the American heavyweight catch wrestling championship at the Liberty Bell Classic/King of Catch Wrestling Tournament, the future of catch wrestling, and much more.

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link doesn't work, please try another.

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", which is also available on iTunes by composer Ian Snow.

No Holds Barred is free to listen to and is sponsored by:

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 AmericanTopTeam.com.

Defense Soap, an effective, deep penetrating body soap with natural antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial soap ingredients. Defense Soap is the best cleansing body soap for men and women athletes who are involved in contact sports such as MMA, wrestling, grappling, jiu-jitsu, and judo, to help their antifungal, anti-ringworm, anti-jock itch strategy. Check out their web site, at DefenseSoap.com.

Payleg.com, which gives you the tools to develop a full-time income by building a home-based business. Teaching success in the home-based business industry since 1988, Payleg.com is available in 190 countries. For more information, go to Payleg.com.

Takedown Wrestling Media, America's wrestling TV and radio shows, which are hosted by founder Scott Casber, and have been airing on radio and Internet for over 17 years. Takedown Media produces a weekly TV program seen in 54 million homes in the U.S. on DirecTV, Dish Network, and cable affiliates around the country, called Takedown TV. Takedown Media also produces the weekly USA Wrestling TV show for the governing body of the sport, USA Wrestling. For more information, go to TakedownRadio.com.

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Thursday, December 18, 2014

No Holds Barred: Steve Kaplan on World Armwrestling League and ESPN 




On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman spoke with Steve Kaplan, the president and commissioner of the World Armwrestling League (WAL).

It was announced earlier this month that ESPN in the U.S. has reached an agreement with WAL for exclusive rights to televise the 2014 World Armwrestling League Championship and the 2015 World Armwrestling League season. More details will be announced shortly, including the dates and times WAL events will be available on television and online.

The next WAL event will take place Saturday, January 10, 2015, at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, Louisiana.

We spoke with Steve Kaplan by phone Tuesday.

Known as a business leader with many interests and accomplishments, he explained why he was attracted to the sport of arm wrestling.

"It is controlled aggression. It is intense. It is high testosterone," he said. "It's all about the combination of the physical and the psychological. And it's matching speed, technique, and power, and utilizing them in a short burst of a time frame to really excel in this sport."

Unlike contact and combat sports, he added, "It allows you to get all that done without the risks of life and limb. And it's really an impressive thing by that."

When arm wrestling was featured on the reality TV show "Game of Arms" earlier this year on the AMC network, he also saw the potential of this sport on television. AMC originally announced that there would be a second season of "Game of Arms", but then reversed course and announced that the network would no longer develop unscripted shows, thus cancelling a second season.

By then, WAL had started running live events, and they went to ESPN, which led to the current agreement.

We also discussed more on the sport of arm wrestling, the appeal of watching these professional and elite athletes, the plans for running numerous events across the U.S. in 2015, the profit-sharing of WAL with their athletes, why "this should be a major sport", plans for PED testing, and much, much more.

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link doesn't work, please try another.

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", which is also available on iTunes by composer Ian Snow.

No Holds Barred is free to listen to and is sponsored by:

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 AmericanTopTeam.com.

Defense Soap, an effective, deep penetrating body soap with natural antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial soap ingredients. Defense Soap is the best cleansing body soap for men and women athletes who are involved in contact sports such as MMA, wrestling, grappling, jiu-jitsu, and judo, to help their antifungal, anti-ringworm, anti-jock itch strategy. Check out their web site, at DefenseSoap.com.

Payleg.com, which gives you the tools to develop a full-time income by building a home-based business. Teaching success in the home-based business industry since 1988, Payleg.com is available in 190 countries. For more information, go to Payleg.com.

Takedown Wrestling Media, America's wrestling TV and radio shows, which are hosted by founder Scott Casber, and have been airing on radio and Internet for over 17 years. Takedown Media produces a weekly TV program seen in 54 million homes in the U.S. on DirecTV, Dish Network, and cable affiliates around the country, called Takedown TV. Takedown Media also produces the weekly USA Wrestling TV show for the governing body of the sport, USA Wrestling. For more information, go to TakedownRadio.com.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

No Holds Barred: News Conference Announces MMA Fighters' Lawsuit vs. UFC 


On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman presents the complete audio from the news conference held Tuesday, December 16, in San Jose, California, announcing a class-action lawsuit by three current and former MMA fighters against the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) alleging illegal market monopolization.

We expect to cover this more in depth shortly. Here is the official news release announcing this suit:

Mixed Martial Arts Fighters File Class-Action Lawsuit Against Ultimate Fighting Championship Alleging Illegal Market Monopolization

(SAN JOSE, Calif. –Dec. 16, 2014) Three current and former high-profile Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighters filed a multi-million-dollar class-action lawsuit today against the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) organization, accusing the $2-billion outfit of illegally maintaining monopoly and monoposony power by systematically eliminating competition from rival promoters, artificially suppressing fighters’ earnings from bouts and merchandising and marketing activities through restrictive contracting and other exclusionary practices.

The civil action – Cung Le, et al. v. Zuffa, LLC, d/b/a Ultimate Fighting Championship and UFC – filed today in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in San Jose, seeks treble damages and injunctive relief under the Sherman Antitrust Act stemming from the UFC’s alleged “over-arching, anti-competitive scheme to enhance its monopoly power” in the market for promotion of live Elite Professional MMA bouts, and monopsony power in the market for live Elite Professional MMA Fighter services in the U.S. Monopsony refers to when there are many “sellers” and few “buyers” in the marketplace.

The lawsuit filed by fighters Cung Le, Nathan Quarry and Jon Fitch, who seek to represent a class of similarly situated current and former UFC professional combatants, alleges that the plaintiffs are victims of the UFC’s illegal scheme to eliminate its competition in the sport of MMA and suppress compensation for UFC Fighters from bouts and fighter identities and likenesses.

According to plaintiffs’ counsel Benjamin Brown, of Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC, “The UFC was built on the battered bodies of MMA fighters who have left their blood and sweat in the Octagon. Those fighters are entitled to the benefits of a competitive market for their talents.”

The lawsuit targets defendants Zuffa LLC, the Las Vegas-based company that conducts business as the UFC. Zuffa is primarily owned by billionaires Lorenzo and Frank Fertitta, along with the UFC’s front-man, President Dana White. White has publicly boasted about the success of the UFC’s alleged illegal scheme, allegedly claiming that “there is no competition” because “I am the grim reaper[.]”

The lawsuit claims that the UFC’s alleged anti-competitive acts, in particular its actions over a period of years, have made and maintained the UFC as the only option for MMA fighters who want to earn a viable living in the profession.

“All UFC Fighters are paid a mere fraction of what they would make in a competitive market,” said Brown. “Rather than earning paydays comparable to boxers – a sport with many natural parallels – MMA fighters go substantially under-compensated despite the punishing nature of their profession.”

Above all, the lawsuit alleges that the UFC prevents fighters from working with other MMA promoters, mounting self-promotional efforts of their own or signing with outside sponsors – monopolistic practices that suppress fighters’ incomes.

According to named plaintiff Cung Le, of San Jose, Calif., an internationally acclaimed MMA combatant, “Because of the UFC’s coercive practices, competitive market forces have been strangled, future earnings power of the athletes is stripped away, and purses to the fighters are artificially depressed.”

Plaintiffs’ co-counsel and sports law specialist Robert Maysey, of Warner Angle Hallam Jackson & Formanek PLC, added, “As a result of the UFC’s illegal conduct, they have become the only game in town and locked down the entire sport. It is ironic that the fiercest combat athletes in the world have, until now, been powerless to take on the UFC.”

The lawsuit alleges that the UFC has pursued an aggressive strategy of depriving key inputs to potential rival promoters or merging with them to maintain its monopoly position. The complaint alleges “exclusionary scheme” to impair and foreclose competition, whereby the UFC deprives potential competitors in the fight promotion market access to elite MMA fighters, premium live event venues and sponsors.

According to plaintiffs’ co-counsel Michael Dell’Angelo, of Berger & Montague, P.C., “the lawsuit alleges that the UFC has engaged in an illegal scheme to eliminate competition from rival MMA promoters by systematically preventing rivals from gaining access to ingredients critical to successful MMA promotions, including by imposing extreme restrictions on UFC Fighters’ ability to fight for rivals during and after their tenure with the UFC. The UFC also takes the rights to fighters’ names and likenesses in perpetuity. As a result of the UFC’s scheme, we allege that UFC Fighters are paid fraction of what they would earn in a competitive marketplace.”

The lawsuit alleges that as a result of these and other anti-competitive acts, including the UFC’s acquisition of rival Strikeforce, the UFC has maintained control of more than 90 percent of the revenue derived from live MMA bouts nationwide.

The lawsuit also alleges that the UFC has retaliated against fighters who have worked with or who have announced intentions to work with rival promoters or sponsors by refusing to book their bouts and/or eliminating them from key UFC promotional activities such as advertising campaigns and video games.

“UFC’s threats are taken seriously by fighters because they know that a UFC ban will substantially diminish, if not end, their ability to earn a living at their chosen profession,” said plaintiffs’ co-counsel Joseph Saveri of Saveri Law Firm, Inc. “These MMA professionals deserve the right to take back their careers.

The plaintiffs are represented by nationally respected antitrust litigation firms Cohen Milstein Sellers and Toll PLLC, Berger & Montague, P.C., Joseph Saveri Law Firm, Inc. and Warner Angle Hallam Jackson & Formanek PLC.

For more information about Cung Le, et al v. Zuffa, LLC, d/b/a Ultimate Fighting Championship and UFC, visit http://www.cohenmilstein.com/news.php?NewsID=742.

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link doesn't work, please try another.

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", which is also available on iTunes by composer Ian Snow.

No Holds Barred is free to listen to and is sponsored by:

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 AmericanTopTeam.com.

Defense Soap, an effective, deep penetrating body soap with natural antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial soap ingredients. Defense Soap is the best cleansing body soap for men and women athletes who are involved in contact sports such as MMA, wrestling, grappling, jiu-jitsu, and judo, to help their antifungal, anti-ringworm, anti-jock itch strategy. Check out their web site, at DefenseSoap.com.

Payleg.com, which gives you the tools to develop a full-time income by building a home-based business. Teaching success in the home-based business industry since 1988, Payleg.com is available in 190 countries. For more information, go to Payleg.com.

Takedown Wrestling Media, America's wrestling TV and radio shows, which are hosted by founder Scott Casber, and have been airing on radio and Internet for over 17 years. Takedown Media produces a weekly TV program seen in 54 million homes in the U.S. on DirecTV, Dish Network, and cable affiliates around the country, called Takedown TV. Takedown Media also produces the weekly USA Wrestling TV show for the governing body of the sport, USA Wrestling. For more information, go to TakedownRadio.com.

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Monday, December 15, 2014

No Holds Barred: Joe Warren on Grapple at the Garden and March 27 Bellator Title Defense 




On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman once again spoke with Bellator MMA bantamweight champion Joe Warren.

His next fight will be a title defense against Marcos Galvao at Bellator 134 on Friday, March 27, at the Winstar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville, Oklahoma, and will be shown live in the U.S. on Spike TV.

Before that, he will be returning to the mat to compete in wrestling, at the third annual Grapple at the Garden.

His team, Team Joe Warren, will face Team Renzo Gracie in an eight-match freestyle wrestling dual meet.

This event takes place Sunday, December 21, at the world's most famous arena, Madison Square Garden, in New York. Joe Warren's opponent will be UFC fighter Scott Jorgensen, who wrestled at Boise State University where he was a three-time Pac-10 Champion. Joe Warren also was a 2006 world champion in Greco-Roman wrestling and a 2000 NCAA Division I All-American wrestler at Michigan.

At Grapple at the Garden, numerous dual meets will take place involving 25 college teams, as well as high school and youth tournaments.

The main event will feature four-time NCAA Div. I champion at Cornell, Kyle Dake of the U.S., competing in Greco-Roman wrestling against Arsen Julfalakyan of Armenia, a 2014 world champion and 2012 Olympic silver medalist in Greco-Roman wrestling. The co-main event will feature two-time world bronze medalist and 2012 Olympian in freestyle wrestling, Tervel Dlagnev of the U.S., against 2004 Olympic gold medalist and five-time world champion in freestyle wrestling, Khadshimourad Gatsalov of Russia, in a freestyle wrestling match.

These two matches and the Team Joe Warren-Team Renzo Gracie dual meet will air live on pay-per-view TV.

We spoke with Joe Warren by phone Sunday.

Commenting on the connections between wrestling and jiu-jitsu, he said, "We're trying to just show that wrestling is the base, is the pedigree of all the rest of these sports and mixed martial arts, jiu-jitsu, whatever you need to go into." He added, "Usually a good wrestler can get the job done."

He continued, "We respect the jiu-jitsu guys and the way they train and their mindset." This event was designed to "mingle" athletes with backgrounds in wrestling, jiu-jitsu, and MMA, as well as two or three of those disciplines.

"This year it kind of blew up even bigger."

His upcoming title defense against Marcos Galvao will be a rematch from Bellator 41 on April 16, 2011. In that fight, a three-round, non-title, catchweight fight. Joe Warren won a unanimous decision, although with some controversy. He explained that in that fight, he had only been fighting professionally for two years, that he has advanced since then, and was then a wrestler doing MMA but now is a mixed martial artist.

We also discussed his plans to be a color commentator, the potential for some type of real professional wrestling to succeed, and much more.

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link doesn't work, please try another.

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", which is also available on iTunes by composer Ian Snow.

No Holds Barred is free to listen to and is sponsored by:

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 AmericanTopTeam.com.

Defense Soap, an effective, deep penetrating body soap with natural antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial soap ingredients. Defense Soap is the best cleansing body soap for men and women athletes who are involved in contact sports such as MMA, wrestling, grappling, jiu-jitsu, and judo, to help their antifungal, anti-ringworm, anti-jock itch strategy. Check out their web site, at DefenseSoap.com.

Payleg.com, which gives you the tools to develop a full-time income by building a home-based business. Teaching success in the home-based business industry since 1988, Payleg.com is available in 190 countries. For more information, go to Payleg.com.

Takedown Wrestling Media, America's wrestling TV and radio shows, which are hosted by founder Scott Casber, and have been airing on radio and Internet for over 17 years. Takedown Media produces a weekly TV program seen in 54 million homes in the U.S. on DirecTV, Dish Network, and cable affiliates around the country, called Takedown TV. Takedown Media also produces the weekly USA Wrestling TV show for the governing body of the sport, USA Wrestling. For more information, go to TakedownRadio.com.

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