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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, April 01, 2016

Eddie Goldman Named Commissioner of World International Catch Wrestling Association Federation (WICWAF) 


NEW YORK, April 1 -- The newly-formed World International Catch Wrestling Association Federation (WICWAF) is proud to announce that the "Voice of Catch Wrestling", Eddie Goldman, has been named its first Commissioner.

WICWAF unveiled its catch-y acronym at its inaugural news conference Friday, April 1. This took place on the site of the old Gilmore's Garden, which was renamed Madison Square Garden in 1879 and was the first of four buildings with that name, in Madison Square Park in New York (or maybe it was at a nearby barroom with a bathroom).

"My goal as Commissioner of WICWAF is to unify all the catch wrestling groups in one organization, run real world championships, hold events alongside other styles of wrestling and grappling, promote diversity in the sport around the world, and have a real grassroots-run international association with good governance," said Eddie Goldman before the hundreds of assembled media and drinkers.

"Everyone is welcome to join, except those who are part of organized crime and already have their own wrestling bodies to ruin. Also, Donald Trump is not welcome. We have zero tolerance for bigotry and idiocy."

The packed news conference featured a live psychic hookup with several dead catch wrestling greats of the past, including Frank Gotch, Tom Connors, Billy Riley, Mitsuyo "Conde Koma" Maeda, Euclydes "Tatu" Hatem, George Gracie, Viro "Black Sam" Small, Phyllis "Tiger Lady" Lee, Billy Robinson, Karl Gotch, Lou Thesz, and Milo of Croton. Google Translate provided the translation. Video was provided via virtual reality headsets borrowed from the back of a truck found near the Lincoln Tunnel, which was named for the wrestler Abraham Lincoln.

"With the forthcoming re-legalization of MMA in New York this year, WICWAF vows that our wrestlers will challenge all MMA champions in two-out-of-three falls catch wrestling matches, where you can only win by pin or submission. We'll see how many accept this challenge, especially since we will have drug testing done by VADA," said Eddie Goldman to thunderous applause.

"And if you still believe that this is anything other than an April Fool's joke, well, come to the live wrestling tonight at midnight in the Roosevelt Avenue subway station, which was named for the wrestler Theodore Roosevelt."

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Thursday, March 31, 2016

No Holds Barred Tenth Anniversary: John Perretti on MMA and Grappling 


On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman once again spoke with lifelong martial artist, former UFC and Battlecade Extreme Fighting matchmaker, TV commentator, and our senior correspondent, John Perretti.

This is another in a series of discussions celebrating the tenth anniversary of this No Holds Barred podcast, which began in March 2006. These interviews will focus both on the legacy and issues raised over the years on this show, as well as contemporary issues and the future of the combat sports and martial arts.

We spoke with John Perretti by phone Tuesday.

Besides having been both a kickboxer as well as a grappler with a black belt from Gene LeBell, John Perretti was a pioneer in mixed martial arts. He devised the modern format of MMA, including the use of weight classes, rounds, and fingerless gloves, as matchmaker with Battlecade Extreme Fighting and later UFC. He even first used the term "mixed martial arts" in the 1980s, before the revival of professional MMA in the 1990s. But when UFC changed hands in 2001, he quit that organization and moved on. And he is not at all happy with what MMA has become.

"I did not see this being the way it is today, before Barnum and Bailey bought it," he said, mockingly referring to Zuffa, UFC's parent company.

"I did not see this fan contingent base being such an odd one, a narrow one." And he decried what he called the "new culture" in MMA today.

We discussed the devolution of MMA in the U.S., why it was accurate to argue in the 1990s that MMA was indeed safer than sports like boxing and college football, and why that is no longer the case.

Grappling has also always been extremely important to him, especially with his own experience of having suffered numerous concussions and some memory loss from his fighting days. In 1997, he attempted to develop a professional grappling pay-per-view event known as "The Contenders". That show, however, was a financial failure, and folded after one event. The question arises, with so many more people training and competing in many styles of grappling and wrestling these two decades later, could some type of professional grappling or real wrestling event succeed now?

"I caution everyone," he said. "I caution everyone that anything is within the clutches of corruption."

After referencing the many corruption scandals in sumo wrestling in Japan, he emphasized, "Anything, no matter how much you want it to be, a solid future for a concussion-less sport of pugilism, is susceptible to a circus coming into town."

We discussed more on concussions and head trauma in combat sports, the techniques of grappling and striking in MMA, some of the history behind the New York State government banning MMA in 1997 and now being set to re-legalize it this year, his being written out of history, his forthcoming memoirs, and much, much more.

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

Also, No Holds Barred is available through iTunes.

You can also listen to No Holds Barred via Stitcher through iOS or Android devices or on the web here.

The PodOmatic Podcast Player app is available for free, both for Android at Google Play, and for iOS on the App Store.

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:

The Frank Gotch World Catch Wrestling Tournament. On Sunday, July 3, 2016, catch wrestlers from all around the world will compete in Humboldt, Iowa, the hometown of the legendary world champion wrestler Frank Gotch. Organized by the Catch Wrestling Alliance and co-sponsored by IAWrestle, the Frank Gotch Statue Committee, and the Frank Gotch Kids Wrestling Club, the event will take place at Humboldt High School. For more information, go to CatchWrestlingAlliance.com.

The North American Catch Wrestling Association, a grassroots organization designed to help rebuild the sport of catch-as-catch-can-wrestling. For more information, go to their Facebook page at facebook.com/NorthAmericanCatchWrestlingAssociation.

BJJ Eastern Europe, for the latest Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu news, articles, interviews, competition calendar, European belt rankings, academy directory, and more. For more information, go to BJJEE.com.

The National Registry for Wrestling, whose mission is to increase wrestling's fanbase, to build a registry of all wrestling fans, to serve as a connecting point for all wrestling fans, and to provide TV and Internet listings for wrestling. For more information, go to NR4W.com.

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Monday, March 28, 2016

No Holds Barred: How to Unstrangle College Wrestling  


On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman offers a number of key proposals to unstrangle the stagnant sport of college wrestling and make it culturally relevant in America.

Among the topics discussed are: the drop in TV ratings for the NCAA Div. I Wrestling Championships from 2015 to 2016; how there are few fans of college wrestling as a sport apart from the fans of each individual school; why college wrestling must be positioned as the anti-football sport, which is much less likely than football to lead to dementia, brain injuries, concussions, and CTE; why college wrestling should be the anti-MMA sport, which emphasizes honor, respect, and inclusion, as opposed to MMA's ubiquitous trash talk, vulgarity, disrespect, brain injuries, and doping; how college wrestling must reposition itself to be seen as part of the martial arts, and especially a form of grappling, and link up with these martial arts communities both on and off the campuses; the need for a major push for diversity in college wrestling, including establishing ties with predominantly Black and Latino public schools, communities, and organizations, as well as the LGBT communities both on and off their campuses; how college wrestling must develop a major presence in the urban centers and especially on both coasts of the U.S.; the need to popularize the incredible history of wrestling, the world's oldest sport, and which originated in Africa; why all this will not be carried out by the various bureaucracies overseeing college wrestling but can only be realized by the teams, coaches, wrestlers, and their communities themselves; and much more.

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

Also, No Holds Barred is available through iTunes.

You can also listen to No Holds Barred via Stitcher through iOS or Android devices or on the web here.

The PodOmatic Podcast Player app is available for free, both for Android at Google Play, and for iOS on the App Store.

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:

The Frank Gotch World Catch Wrestling Tournament. On Sunday, July 3, 2016, catch wrestlers from all around the world will compete in Humboldt, Iowa, the hometown of the legendary world champion wrestler Frank Gotch. Organized by the Catch Wrestling Alliance and co-sponsored by IAWrestle, the Frank Gotch Statue Committee, and the Frank Gotch Kids Wrestling Club, the event will take place at Humboldt High School. For more information, go to CatchWrestlingAlliance.com.

The North American Catch Wrestling Association, a grassroots organization designed to help rebuild the sport of catch-as-catch-can-wrestling. For more information, go to their Facebook page at facebook.com/NorthAmericanCatchWrestlingAssociation.

BJJ Eastern Europe, for the latest Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu news, articles, interviews, competition calendar, European belt rankings, academy directory, and more. For more information, go to BJJEE.com.

The National Registry for Wrestling, whose mission is to increase wrestling's fanbase, to build a registry of all wrestling fans, to serve as a connecting point for all wrestling fans, and to provide TV and Internet listings for wrestling. For more information, go to NR4W.com.

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