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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, March 20, 2015

No Holds Barred: Steve Koepfer on April 11 U.S. Combat Wrestling World Team Trials 



On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman spoke with Steve Koepfer, the owner and head coach of New York Combat Sambo.

Our main topic was a new and important event, the 2015 U.S. Combat Wrestling World Team Trials.

This event takes place Saturday, April 11, at the TK Martial Arts Academy, 223 East Monroe Avenue, Lowell, Arkansas 72745.

Combat wrestling, originally developed in Japan over 20 years ago by wrestling legend Noriaki Kiguchi, is being revived internationally. It is a style of submission wrestling which includes winning by submission or points, with points being awarded for attaining takedowns, superior positions, pins, and more.

The U.S. Combat Wrestling World Team Trials is a qualifying event for the first-ever Combat Wrestling World Championships held by the International Federation of Combat Wrestling (FICW), which will take place August 22, 2015, in Varna, Bulgaria.

A crowdfunding page to help support the U.S. combat wrestling team has been set up here.

We spoke with Steve Koepfer Monday at the headquarters of New York Combat Sambo.

"The end of last year, I was contacted by Ivaylo Ivanov," the founder and president of the FICW, he said.

"He had been working with Kiguchi-san from Japan on really getting this world federation together for combat wrestling."

As for the sport of combat wrestling, "It's been around a long time. This is pre-Abu Dhabi submission wrestling sport. It kind of declined in Japan for a bit, like MMA and everything else, but I think the rise and popularity of no-jacket submission wrestling-type events has really brought it back."

With plans being made for the first combat wrestling world championships in August, "Ivaylo had reached out to me to help through the American Sambo Association organize the first U.S. team trials and put the team together."

We discussed the rules of combat wrestling, how the U.S. Combat Wrestling World Team Trials are being organized in a professional manner, the rapid growth around the world of combat wrestling and its international federation in just one year, some of the other important events coming up in sambo and 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.

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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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

No Holds Barred: Bob Mayeri Previews 2015 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships 


On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman spoke with our long-time colleague and wrestling correspondent, Bob Mayeri.

In our discussion, we previewed the 2015 NCAA Div. I Wrestling Championships.

The 2015 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships run from Thursday, March 19, through Saturday, March 21, in St. Louis's Scottrade Center, and in the U.S., powerhouse telecaster ESPN is slated to show all the action. The finals Saturday night, along with the often epic semifinals Friday night, will both be shown live in prime time on ESPN. The other four sessions will be shown live on their college sports-oriented network, ESPNU.

In addition, all the action will be available live online on ESPN3, which will offer a multi-mat, simultaneous viewing format showing up to four different mats at one time. And both the TV and ESPN3 content will be available on their WatchESPN app.

Here is the TV schedule, with all times EDT:

2015 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championship Television Schedule

Date Time Session Network

Thursday, March 19
Noon - 3:30 p.m. 1st Round ESPNU & ESPN3
7 p.m. - 10:30 p.m. 2nd Round ESPNU & ESPN3

Friday, March 20
11 a.m. - 2 p.m. Quarterfinals ESPNU & ESPN3
8 p.m. - 11 p.m. Semifinals ESPN & ESPN3

Saturday, March 21
11 a.m. - 2 p.m. Medal Round ESPNU & ESPN3
8:00 p.m. - 11 p.m. Championship Finals ESPN & ESPN3

For more information on ESPN's TV and online coverage, go here.

We spoke with Bob Mayeri by phone Tuesday.

"I think the team race seems to have piqued everybody's curiosity, because when I look at it I see at least five teams that have a possibility of winning this whole thing, although three of them seem to have the main focus," he said.

"Iowa, Ohio State, Missouri -- those are the main three, with considerations got to be given to Minnesota and Cornell also in the team race."

With team points being earned both in the regular tournament matches and the wrestlebacks, "It will have everybody waiting to see how it turns out," he said.

We also discussed the favorites for winners in each of the ten weight classes, the quest by Ohio State's Logan Stieber to win his fourth straight NCAA title, what team victories by upstart teams like Missouri or Ohio State would mean for college 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.

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, March 16, 2015

No Holds Barred: Mike Chapman on Nat Pendleton, Catch and College Wrestling Star 



On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman once again spoke with wrestling historian and author Mike Chapman.

He has recently written a book on undefeated college wrestler, 1920 Olympic silver medalist wrestler, pro catch wrestler and shooter, and Hollywood actor Nat Pendleton.

We spoke with Mike Chapman by phone Saturday.

While wrestling for Columbia, which had the first college wrestling program in the U.S., "He was an exceptional college wrestler, never lost a match," he said.

"This is before the days of the NCAA tournament, of course. He won the Eastern Intercollegiate Wresting Association title twice, which is a really tough tournament," in 1914 and 1915, he said.

"He won the AAU Nationals twice," in 1916 and 1920, he said, in what was then called amateur catch-as-catch-can wrestling, and today is known as freestyle wrestling.

Also in amateur catch-as-catch-can wrestling, in 1920, he said, "He won a silver medal in the Olympics." Many observers of that match have argued that Pendleton was robbed of the gold medal, "which happens a lot in international competition."

Pendleton's next stop was pro wrestling, which had not completely devolved into the spectacle we have today.

This was "at a time when pro wrestling was starting to evolve from a pure athletic contest -- well, actually it was already well into the evolution into show business and theatrics."

As to how Nat Pendleton reacted to this change in pro wrestling, he said, "I maintain from my research through the last ten years, and what I've known about Nat, that Nat really felt that he was a catch wrestler extraordinaire. He loved catch wrestling. He cared deeply about it. And he resisted the movement into theatrics."

Of course, to theatrics it was for pro wrestling, so after a few years, he decided to go where people were upfront about their theatrics -- Hollywood, where he had a career appearing in almost 100 films.

We also discussed a legendary pro catch wrestling match which Nat Pendleton had in 1923 with the great John Pesek, which is one of the last real, or shoot, matches in pro wrestling. Held in Boston with heavy newspaper coverage, Pesek was able to defeat Pendleton by submission in two straight falls.

In addition, we discussed the legacy of Nat Pendleton for college wrestling and his alma mater, Columbia; the lessons of the devolution of catch wrestling last century into a staged spectacle; what the re-emerging catch wrestling movement of today has to learn about good governance of the sport and the battle against corruption from the tragedy of the real sport's demise in the past; and much more.

Mike Chapman's biography of Nat Pendleton is a must-read for all those interested in the history of college, Olympic, catch, and pro wrestling. It provides a rare insight into the life of a remarkable individual who went from the Ivy League halls of Columbia University to the wrestling mats and rings of his era, and then to an acting career during the golden age of Hollywood films. The book is also appropriate for teens and children, who will no doubt learn a lot about life and history in the 20th century.

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.

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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Sunday, March 15, 2015

"Everything! ESPN to Show All of NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships", on DefenseSoap.com 



My latest blog for the Defense Soap site, "Everything! ESPN to Show All of NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships", is up at http://blog.defensesoap.com/news/everything-espn-to-show-all-of-ncaa-division-i-wrestling-championships.

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