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Friday, July 10, 2020

No Holds Barred: Chris Baldwin on Training in the Pandemic, All Black Lives Matter, and Athlete Activism 


On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman once again spoke with Chris Baldwin AKA the Fight Goddess.

We spoke with her by phone Thursday.

With the coronavirus pandemic still raging and cases of Covid-19 continuing to surge in many places in the U.S., including in Southern California, she has had to change how she conducts personal training.

"I had a mobile training business for the last 12 years here in Los Angeles, and that business came to a screeching halt once the lockdown order came from my Governer Newsom," she said, a lockdown, by the way, which she supports. She thus has had to shift gears and focus more on her Skullz punching bag product.

"Now I've had to do more virtual training," mainly outside, she said.

"It's taken a toll. It's definitely mentally, physically, emotionally, it's definitely taken a toll."

While the pandemic has yet to subside, and there are still a record number of new cases in the U.S. almost every day now, the fight against racism, white supremacy, and police murders and brutality has mushroomed to all parts of the U.S. and around the world. One of the largest and most important of these marches and rallies took place on June 14 under the slogan "All Black Lives Matter," which she attended. The march focused on both the Black Lives Matter movement as well as the fight for LGBTQ rights.

The "All Black Lives Matter" slogan was chosen for an "emphasis even not on LGB, but on the T. So our transgender family members are being murdered, our brothers and sisters are being murdered every single day at an astronomical rate."

While some in this growing Black Lives Matter movement exclude transgender people or even are offensive to them, she opposes such a stance.

"We can't have that," she said. "Your values, our values need to be aligned with unity."

We also discussed the call by unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua for athletes to form a union to fight racism; the recent formation of the Players Alliance by over 100 Black current and former pro baseball players to fight racism and white supremacy inside and outside of baseball; how viable are sports without fans present; the controversy around a proposed Tyson Fury-Anthony Joshua fight being arranged by accused gangster Daniel Kinahan; and much, much more.

(Photo by Marna Deitch.)

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link does not work, please try another.

No Holds Barred is available at Google Play Music.

Also, No Holds Barred is available at Apple Podcasts.

No Holds Barred is also available on Spotify.

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 sponsored by:

LenneHardt.com, the home of Lenne Hardt, the legendary MMA and sports announcer, voice actor, singer, actress, and comedienne. Lenne is also known for her jazz vocals with her Lenne Hardt Jazz Cabaret Band. For more information, to book her, or to order a custom message from her, go to LenneHardt.com.

Skullz Combat Sports Equipment, creator of the patented Skullz Double-End Bag, is the perfect punching bag for your combat sports training. Skullz Double-End Bags provide a realistic striking target, and help improve speed, distance, and timing skills. Hang it and hit it right out of the box! No pump required. Skullz Combat Sports Equipment - Advancing combat sports equipment for the next generation of fighters. For more information, go to https://instagram.com/skullzcombatsports and https://facebook.com/skullzcombatsports.

Adolphina Studios. Original art prints and handcrafted fine jewelry. For more information, go to https://www.etsy.com/shop/AdolphinaStudios.

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Wednesday, July 01, 2020

No Holds Barred: Declan Hill on the Kinahan Gang and Boxing's Latest Scandal 


On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman once again spoke with investigative journalist, academic, consultant, and expert on match-fixing and corruption in international sports, Declan Hill.

He is also an associate professor in the Investigations Department at the Henry C. Lee College of Criminal Justice and Forensic Sciences at the University of New Haven in New Haven, Connecticut.

We spoke with him by phone Tuesday.

The news broke in June that Daniel Kinahan would be playing a key role in arranging a potential heavyweight title unification fight between Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua, the two top fighters in the division and holders between them of all the major belts. But not many outside Kinahan's native Ireland knew who he was or his history.

Soon stories appeared in the Irish media explaining that Kinahan, now based in Dubai, headed a notorious international gang which engaged in drug and arms smuggling. Officials from the then-Irish prime minister to members of rival Irish political parties all condemned his attempt to rebrand himself as simply a boxing promoter or advisor. Many in the U.K. media as well as a few in the boxing media then reported on this story. Even so, Kinahan continued to receive praise from Tyson Fury, Bob Arum, and other prominent boxing people. While Kinahan has since been said to be withdrawing from publicly engaging in boxing negotiations, his ties to many fighters remain, at best, unclear.

"This story is like something out of Hollywood, and I have absolutely no doubt that there will be a movie made of this at some point," said Declan Hill.

"This is the Kinahan Gang and it's their long-standing blood feud with the Hutch Gang."

We discussed in depth the Irish government's long battle against these feuding drug gangs, the role of the media in this story, how this fits in with boxing's long history of association with organized crime, and much, much more.

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link does not work, please try another.

No Holds Barred is available at Google Play Music.

Also, No Holds Barred is available at Apple Podcasts.

No Holds Barred is also available on Spotify.

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 sponsored by:

LenneHardt.com, the home of Lenne Hardt, the legendary MMA and sports announcer, voice actor, singer, actress, and comedienne. Lenne is also known for her jazz vocals with her Lenne Hardt Jazz Cabaret Band. For more information, to book her, or to order a custom message from her, go to LenneHardt.com.

Skullz Combat Sports Equipment, creator of the patented Skullz Double-End Bag, is the perfect punching bag for your combat sports training. Skullz Double-End Bags provide a realistic striking target, and help improve speed, distance, and timing skills. Hang it and hit it right out of the box! No pump required. Skullz Combat Sports Equipment - Advancing combat sports equipment for the next generation of fighters. For more information, go to https://instagram.com/skullzcombatsports and https://facebook.com/skullzcombatsports.

Adolphina Studios. Original art prints and handcrafted fine jewelry. For more information, go to https://www.etsy.com/shop/AdolphinaStudios.

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Monday, June 08, 2020

Amid the Coronavirus Pandemic and Protests Against Racism and Police Violence, Who Will Still Watch Boxing? 


by Eddie Goldman

Much ado -- as much as anyone makes about boxing these days anyway -- is being made about the return of live televised boxing this Tuesday, June 9, on ESPN in the U.S. It will take place in Las Vegas at the MGM Grand Conference Center Grand Ballroom, a room much smaller than the MGM Grand Garden Arena where major fights are held.

The significance of this fight card is not that it is so spectacular, but that it is happening at all. This will be the first step in resuming major professional fights since most sports were shut down in early March because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The card is purposely a modest one, designed to dip boxing's toes back in the water and iron out any kinks as bigger shows are planned for the future. Promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank said on the fight's prefight media conference call and in numerous interviews that no title fights were planned for it so as to avoid complications of involving the sanctioning bodies, including presumably having their officials at the fight.

There has been much discussion about the safety protocols to prevent spread of the coronavirus, especially since no vaccine exists and none is expected to be available for some time. These protocols were devised in cooperation with the Nevada State Athletic Commission.

On the June 9 show, there will be no fans or media allowed. The fighters were tested for the virus when they arrived in Las Vegas and then quarantined in their hotel rooms until the results came back. Already one fighter, 2016 Olympian and unbeaten super featherweight Mikaela Mayer, tested positive. Her fight against Helen Joseph, billed as the show's co-feature, had to be cancelled. There are no other reports of positive coronavirus tests, but what these tests of participants and crew show after the event is over will be instructive in assessing how effective these safety measures were.

The main event features a fighter Top Rank is pushing hard, 2016 Olympic silver medalist and undefeated WBO featherweight champ Shakur Stevenson. His fight, at super featherweight, will see him face the relatively unknown Felix Caraballo, who has never before fought outside Puerto Rico. Stevenson said on the prefight media conference call that he might remain at super featherweight after this fight. While this is certainly a showcase fight which is expected to be one-sided, few are complaining since this first effort back on TV is partially an experiment in getting all these safety procedures right while producing something people will want to watch.

And therein lies a problem and challenge with this show which few are discussing. It takes place while the global coronavirus pandemic is still going on. And it takes place after about two weeks of massive demonstrations in every corner of the U.S. and in dozens of countries against the police murder of George Floyd, systematic racism and white supremacy, and continuing police brutality and killings.

Even though there are few live sports on TV, who under these conditions will want to resume watching the hurt business while so much of the world is hurting?

According to the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center, as of Monday morning, June 8, there are 7,049,649 confirmed Covid-19 cases in the world and 409,816 deaths. In the U.S., there are 1,946,144 confirmed cases and 116,929 deaths, the most of any country in the world. The total figures are likely much higher, since many cases and deaths from the virus have not been reported as such.

You likely know someone who has had this terrible disease, or died, or even had it yourself. Much of the world remains in mourning.

Since the murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police on May 25, which was captured on a gruesome video, a mixture of outrage, grief, disbelief, and pent-up anger at the four centuries of white supremacy and violence against Black people has burst forth in an almost unprecedented and unending wave of demonstrations. As you are reading this, there are still more planned.

The slogan Black Lives Matter has now become mainstream. All over America, discussion and debate are occurring about slashing police budgets, completely reforming police practices, and punishing and firing the many law-breaking cops and their superiors who have attacked the public and acted like they are paid mercenaries. Trump threatened to unleash the military on American protesters, although this great uprising has forced him to retreat on that fascistic threat. It is no exaggeration to note that the very existence of American democracy appears to be at stake in this crisis.

With these twin crises involving death and violence, the coronavirus pandemic and the battles over policing and racism in America, how will the public receive the return of the violent sport of boxing?

The culture in these crises is quite different from what it was immediately after 9/11. Then most of the world was fighting angry at a cowardly shadowy enemy of fanatical and lunatic mass murdering terrorists. The atmosphere at the Bernard Hopkins-Felix "Tito" Trinidad fight at Madison Square Garden a few weeks after 9/11 was one of defiance. Here we can be angry at the politicians, corrupt and incompetent, who allowed this virus and police brutality to spread. But even this odious lot did not actually cause the virus to exist, as much as they failed to halt its spread, and not all of them were the rabid defenders of police violence and racism.

Right now there is a prevailing culture of peace, especially after all the deaths caused by these twin crises. The anti-racist demonstrations, while including a small minority of riotous provocateurs, have chiefly emphasized reconciliation.

How, then, in this culture of peace, sadness, fear, despair, isolation, uncertainty, and ill health, can we expect sports like boxing quickly to regain their audiences once they begin to be shown again on TV and streamed? The issue is not fights with no audience, which will undoubtedly change the tone of the events, because other, non-combat sports like baseball and soccer/football are also returning with no fans. The issue is the fights themselves.

Is this the time you want to see someone knocked out? Is today the day you want to see someone dropped by a body shot, or a combination in the corner, or someone fall to their knees, bleeding and about to lose consciousness? Is now when you want to see a war in the ring, no matter how artful or dramatic, while these wars rage worldwide, punctuated by endless sirens?

Sure, the hardcore fight fans will be happy to get their sport back. But will that be enough to sustain the sport financially? And how will this worldwide economic crisis, which will not end quickly, affect the spending habits of the more casual and cash-strapped fans?

There are no easy or ready-made answers. But do not expect things to be anywhere near-identical as they were before these twin crises, as sports resume, however gradually.

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Monday, May 25, 2020

Kilindi Iyi, RIP 


In April, I was saddened to learn that martial arts legend and one of the main proponents of the African fighting sciences in America, Kilindi Iyi, had passed due to Covid-19. I had planned to do a tribute to him then, but my own health problems prevented that (more on that at another time). I had conducted an extensive interview with him in July 2013 for No Holds Barred, so given all the circumstances, I am reposting a link to that original show.

You can play or download this show at here and here. If one link does not work, please try another.

A GoFundMe page was also set up to support his family, at https://www.gofundme.com/f/baba-kilindi.

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Friday, April 03, 2020

No Holds Barred: Rob Koehler on Athletes' Key Role in Forcing the IOC to Postpone the Olympics Amidst the Coronavirus Pandemic 


On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman once again spoke with Rob Koehler, director general of Global Athlete.

We spoke with him by phone Thursday.

For weeks the International Olympic Committee and its president, Thomas Bach, insisted that the 2020 Tokyo Olympics would go on as scheduled starting in July, and even after the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic on March 11. That only changed on March 24, when the IOC and the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee did an abrupt about-face and announced that the Olympics would be postponed. Later on March 30, they announced that the new dates would be July 23 to August 8, 2021, for the Olympics and August 24 to September 5, 2021, for the Paralympics. But these changes were only made after many athletes and sports organizations were vociferously protesting, demanding a postponement, and saying they would not participate on the originally planned dates to protect their health.

"The International Olympic Committee and Thomas Bach, I think, really didn't manage this in a way that had the athletes' rights respected in the manner that they should have been," said Rob Koehler.

A pandemic was declared, Olympic qualifying events were being cancelled, many professional sports organizations postponed or cancelled events, training facilities and gyms were being closed, borders were being closed, people were self-isolating, positive tests and deaths from the coronavirus were mounting, and some countries instituted lockdowns. But the IOC was "telling athletes to continue to train, continue to go forward with their preparations for the Olympic Games, which for us and the athlete groups we spoke to was an out-of-touch message" that ignored the "number one thing," public health, he said.

"We rallied the troops. We worked with different sports, athletics, the different countries to look at the message we wanted to send to the International Olympic Committee. And we called very openly and very vocally for the IOC to make an announcement that they're postponing the Games. They owed the duty of care to athletes. They were acting very irresponsibly. And I think the athletes' voice, the way they spoke up, forced the IOC to make a decision that they should have made a week before, and that was to postpone the Games," he said.

"We understand it's a very difficult situation, there's a lot of moving parts, it's not an easy decision, but all athletes needed to hear was, 'it's being postponed and we'll figure things out and we'll let you know once we figure things out.'

"And the athletes forced that card on them, and I was proud of every athlete that stood up."

We also discussed how many athletes competing in professional leagues have representation while many Olympic athletes do not; various models for independent athletes' associations; the need to support athletes' mental health with the postponement of the Olympics; how it is not yet known if athletes will be able to train in time to prepare for an Olympics starting in July 2021; the fiasco of the IOC-run Olympic boxing qualifier in London which was only cancelled midway after it had started and saw several boxers and coaches test positive for coronavirus afterwards; alternatives to the Olympic movement; and much, much more.

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link does not work, please try another.

No Holds Barred is available at Google Play Music.

Also, No Holds Barred is available at Apple Podcasts.

No Holds Barred is also available on Spotify.

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 sponsored by:

LenneHardt.com, the home of Lenne Hardt, the legendary MMA and sports announcer, voice actor, singer, actress, and comedienne. Lenne is also known for her jazz vocals with her Lenne Hardt Jazz Cabaret Band. For more information, to book her, or to order a custom message from her, go to LenneHardt.com.

Skullz Combat Sports Equipment, creator of the patented Skullz Double-End Bag, is the perfect punching bag for your combat sports training. Skullz Double-End Bags provide a realistic striking target, and help improve speed, distance, and timing skills. Hang it and hit it right out of the box! No pump required. Skullz Combat Sports Equipment - Advancing combat sports equipment for the next generation of fighters. For more information, go to https://instagram.com/skullzcombatsports and https://facebook.com/skullzcombatsports.

Adolphina Studios. Original art prints and handcrafted fine jewelry. For more information, go to https://www.etsy.com/shop/AdolphinaStudios.

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Tuesday, March 17, 2020

No Holds Barred: Caradh O'Donovan On Coronavirus, Combat Sports, and the Olympics 


On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman once again spoke with former kickboxer and current member of the Irish karate team Caradh O'Donovan.

We spoke with her by Skype Sunday.

With karate being included on the program of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, she had hoped to represent Ireland there. Now, in light of the worldwide coronavirus pandemic, she and athletes in all sports and all countries may not be able to realize their dreams of competing in the Olympics. Most Olympic qualifying events have either been cancelled or postponed, and when or even if they will take place are at best uncertain.

Speaking about the Olympic qualifying events, she said, "My personal view is that everything should be stopped." Even if the European karate championships, which were cancelled, were still going on, she said she would have pulled out of them.

"I think that people who are making the decisions should be taking the health and safety of people first, not just the fans, but every single person that's involved in the sport. And sometimes that means making calls that means, yes, will probably cost a lot of money and upset people, but it might be for the greater good," she said.

While most Olympic qualifying and other sporting events are now off, still, as of Monday, March 16, the International Olympic Committee and Tokyo 2020 have been insisting that the 2020 Olympics will start on time as planned on July 24.

"It just seems to be a really out of touch position to take on it," she said, "because this is a serious virus that's going around, and it's killing people in so many different corners of the world. I just think the attitude is very flippant and maybe it trivializes what's going on."

She added, "Obviously you can't say for sure, but it does appear to be that the bottom line is money, and those decisions will kind of be based around protecting that and protecting the organization."

Perhaps it will take athletes and fans speaking up to get the IOC and Tokyo 2020 to change their position, but "I just don't see it going as smoothly as they want it to be."

She said all this as someone who is 35 years old and is competing in a sport, karate, that is on the Olympic program for 2020 but not for 2024.

"This is coming from me, who wants to go. This has been my dream forever to get to these Games," she said.

"The entire world is shutting down. Businesses are being impacted. Yet the Olympic Games is just going to come through this unscathed? It just doesn't seem realistic."

We also discussed what she has been doing while training facilities are closed down due to the coronavirus pandemic, the great likelihood of transmission of the virus in combat and contact sports, her new role on a weekly sports radio show at a time when there are no sporting events, and much, much more.

(Photo of Caradh O'Donovan at 2018 Irish Kenpo Karate Union Open by Noel Bergin.)

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link does not work, please try another.

No Holds Barred is available at Google Play Music.

Also, No Holds Barred is available at Apple Podcasts.

No Holds Barred is also available on Spotify.

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 sponsored by:

LenneHardt.com, the home of Lenne Hardt, the legendary MMA and sports announcer, voice actor, singer, actress, and comedienne. Lenne is also known for her jazz vocals with her Lenne Hardt Jazz Cabaret Band. For more information, to book her, or to order a custom message from her, go to LenneHardt.com.

Skullz Combat Sports Equipment, creator of the patented Skullz Double-End Bag, is the perfect punching bag for your combat sports training. Skullz Double-End Bags provide a realistic striking target, and help improve speed, distance, and timing skills. Hang it and hit it right out of the box! No pump required. Skullz Combat Sports Equipment - Advancing combat sports equipment for the next generation of fighters. For more information, go to https://instagram.com/skullzcombatsports and https://facebook.com/skullzcombatsports.

Adolphina Studios. Original art prints and handcrafted fine jewelry. For more information, go to https://www.etsy.com/shop/AdolphinaStudios.

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Thursday, March 05, 2020

No Holds Barred: Joshua-Pulev, Fury-Wilder 3 -- Meh, Bleh, Feh 


On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman discusses the next round of fights for the top tier of heavyweights. Fresh from being stopped in the seventh round by Tyson Fury in their Feb. 22 rematch, Deontay Wilder has reportedly exercised the clause in the contract for that fight for a third fight between these two to take place. The reported working date is July 18. That pushes back any potential fight between the consensus top two heavyweights, Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua. And it means that Joshua's next fight will thus be against his mandatory challenger, Kubrat Pulev. That one is scheduled for June 20 in London.

Why my reaction, and the reaction of most who follow boxing, is meh, bleh, and feh, is discussed and analyzed.

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link does not work, please try another.

No Holds Barred is available at Google Play Music.

Also, No Holds Barred is available at Apple Podcasts.

No Holds Barred is also available on Spotify.

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 sponsored by:

LenneHardt.com, the home of Lenne Hardt, the legendary MMA and sports announcer, voice actor, singer, actress, and comedienne. Lenne is also known for her jazz vocals with her Lenne Hardt Jazz Cabaret Band. For more information, to book her, or to order a custom message from her, go to LenneHardt.com.

Skullz Combat Sports Equipment, creator of the patented Skullz Double-End Bag, is the perfect punching bag for your combat sports training. Skullz Double-End Bags provide a realistic striking target, and help improve speed, distance, and timing skills. Hang it and hit it right out of the box! No pump required. Skullz Combat Sports Equipment - Advancing combat sports equipment for the next generation of fighters. For more information, go to https://instagram.com/skullzcombatsports and https://facebook.com/skullzcombatsports.

Adolphina Studios. Original art prints and handcrafted fine jewelry. For more information, go to https://www.etsy.com/shop/AdolphinaStudios.

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Monday, February 24, 2020

No Holds Barred: CRAZY 


On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman discusses Tyson Fury's seventh-round stoppage of Deontay Wilder on February 22 in the biggest fight so far of 2020 and for the heavyweight division. Fury is now clearly the consensus top heavyweight in the world. What this fight meant for both fighters and for boxing, as well as what might be and should be next in the unresolved quest to crown an undisputed heavyweight champion of the world, are all examined.

(Photo of Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury 2 by Ryan Hafey, Premier Boxing Champions.)

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link does not work, please try another.

No Holds Barred is available at Google Play Music.

Also, No Holds Barred is available at Apple Podcasts.

No Holds Barred is also available on Spotify.

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 sponsored by:

Skullz Combat Sports Equipment, creator of the patented Skullz Double-End Bag, is the perfect punching bag for your combat sports training. Skullz Double-End Bags provide a realistic striking target, and help improve speed, distance, and timing skills. Hang it and hit it right out of the box! No pump required. Skullz Combat Sports Equipment - Advancing combat sports equipment for the next generation of fighters. For more information, go to https://instagram.com/skullzcombatsports and https://facebook.com/skullzcombatsports.

Adolphina Studios. Original art prints and handcrafted fine jewelry. For more information, go to https://www.etsy.com/shop/AdolphinaStudios.

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Thursday, February 13, 2020

No Holds Barred: Frank Lotierzo on Wilder-Fury 2 


On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman spoke with boxing analyst Frank Lotierzo.

Our discussion focused on the most important fight both in the heavyweight division and in boxing in general this year, the February 22 rematch between undefeated fighters Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury. This fight will be shown on pay-per-view and streamed live in several countries, and take place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA.

We spoke with Frank Lotierzo by phone Wednesday.

Calling this fight "unfinished business" because of the highly controversial split draw outcome of the first Wilder-Fury fight in December 2018, he said, like the great majority of observers, that he thought Fury deserved to win that fight on points. But the rematch, he argued, may end differently if Fury's skills have declined more than Wilder's have since then. He did add that Wilder is often viewed as "a one-trick pony" whose sole effective weapon is a right hand thrown from the right distance, meaning that Fury's best hope is box, move, and elude that right hand for 12 full rounds.

We discussed why the outcome of this evenly-matched fight is hard to predict, the various scenarios of how this fight might play out and differ from their first fight, why Fury's boasting that he will knock out Wilder is one of the least likely outcomes, what each fighter has to do to win, how Fury possibly coming in at a heavier weight than he did for their first fight may affect him, what a victory for either fighter will mean for boxing and the heavyweights, why Anthony Joshua should be ringside for this fight to challenge the winner, and much, much more.

(Photo of Wilder and Fury from Mikey Williams/Top Rank.)

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link does not work, please try another.

No Holds Barred is available at Google Play Music.

Also, No Holds Barred is available at Apple Podcasts.

No Holds Barred is also available on Spotify.

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 sponsored by:

Skullz Combat Sports Equipment, creator of the patented Skullz Double-End Bag, is the perfect punching bag for your combat sports training. Skullz Double-End Bags provide a realistic striking target, and help improve speed, distance, and timing skills. Hang it and hit it right out of the box! No pump required. Skullz Combat Sports Equipment - Advancing combat sports equipment for the next generation of fighters. For more information, go to https://instagram.com/skullzcombatsports and https://facebook.com/skullzcombatsports.

Adolphina Studios. Original art prints and handcrafted fine jewelry. For more information, go to https://www.etsy.com/shop/AdolphinaStudios.

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Sunday, February 02, 2020

No Holds Barred: Changhee Han on 2nd African Regional Martial Arts Congress and UNESCO's International Centre of Martial Arts 


On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman spoke with Changhee Han. who is the Programme Specialist in charge of the 2nd African Regional Martial Arts Congress and the 3rd Martial Arts Open School Project in 2019, which were organized by UNESCO's International Centre of Martial Arts..

We spoke with him by Skype Friday.

The 2nd African Regional Martial Arts Congress was held September 25-26, 2019, in Accra, Ghana. The first of these congresses was held in 2018 in Nairobi, Kenya, and mainly aimed at the East African countries. The third congress will be held later this year in Zimbabwe and will be aimed at the Southern African region.

Besides bringing together many experts, practitioners, and academics specializing in the martial arts, these regional congresses and the martial arts open schools are designed to spread more than the many techniques used in the martial arts.

"Our Centre is under UNESCO and also Korean government," he said. "So it's not just about distribution of martial arts in Africa or in the world. We are here for helping youth, and women, or disabled, handicapped people, using by martial arts, its philosophy, or its value. Value matters. Value matters for our Centre."

And he stressed, "That's the reason of our existence."

We discussed more on the goals of the International Centre of Martial Arts, how each of the African regional congresses have developed, the importance focusing on the African martial arts, the growth of the open schools project, the importance of the traditional Korean martial art Taekkyeon, how wrestling is a martial art, and much, much more.

(Photo of 2nd African Regional Martial Arts Congress by Changhee Han.)

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