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, December 30, 2005

The Fights of New Year's Weekend 

So you want to see some fighting on the tube and all the football and booze and the New Year's celebrations with the amateur partygoers are not enough for you. There are mostly repeats and taped broadcasts in the U.S. this weekend, so here's a peek.

Showtime has its year-end special "Showtime Boxing: Best of 2005" this Sat., Dec. 31, starting at 2:10 PM ET. This is a studio show about a half-hour long.

ESPN2 has another showing of the World Sumo Challenge on Friday from 10 PM ET to midnight.

The Spanish-language network Telefutura concludes the year with a special edition of its weekly "Solo Boxeo" with "Las Grandes Peleas del 2005", its year-end best-of show starting Friday at 9 PM ET. Featured will be the brawl between Johnny Tapia and Frankie Archuleta.

For mixed martial arts fans, Pride Fighting Championships, the Japanese-based mixed martial arts company with the best overall roster of fighters, has another of its monthly studio shows featuring some of its top fights of the recent past. This is on Fox Sports Net at various times around the U.S., so scour your local listings. On Fox Sports New York, it is on Friday at 10:30 PM ET for one hour.

Pride will also have its big New Year's Eve show Saturday night in Japan. That show will be broadcast live in Japan on the Fuji Network . An edited version will be shown in the U.S. on tape-delayed pay-per-view starting Sunday, Jan. 1.

Their rival group in Japan, K-1, will also have its huge New Year's Eve show which will be broadcast live on Japan's TBS network . No announcement has been made so far if there will be any broadcast of this event in the U.S.

And there are other assorted fight pay-per-views and local shows, so if you must, also check your local provider's listings.

And as mentioned previously , UFC has its year-end special also Saturday night on Spike TV.

Of course, being held captive by the inflexible schedules of these networks is becoming as passé as 2005. Tech and media guru J.D. Lasica has written extensively that we are in the midst of a personal and citizens' media revolution which is more and more empowering ordinary people and weakening corporations, bureaucracies, and governments. The way we consume media, including of course the combat sports, is changing. It is just these networks which are too slow to change, giving rise to all sorts of legal, semi-legal, and illegal viewing of these fights.

So hopefully you will get to see some fighting alongside your New Year's revelry. Just make sure that it is in the ring or on some type of screen, and not in the bars, clubs, or streets.

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