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Sunday, October 23, 2011

No Holds Barred: Crazy Decisions and the Crisis of Governance in Combat Sports 

On this audio edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman discusses the latest series of crazy and controversial decisions in boxing and MMA, and how this reflects the crisis of governance in the combat sports.

In boxing, we start by noting the growing chaos in the aftermath of the October 15 Bernard Hopkins-Chad Dawson fight, officially ruled a TKO victory for Dawson but which most people believe should have been declared a no contest/no decision after Dawson lifted and threw Hopkins to the mat. We discuss the highly controversial unanimous decision victory for Edwin Rodriguez over Will Rosinsky on Friday, October 21, in what was a very competitive fight, and the unanimous decision victory by Nonito Donaire over Omar Narvaez on Saturday, October 22, in what was supposed to be a showcase fight involving boxers from different weight classes.

In MMA, we discuss the controversial split decision victory by Alexis Vila over Marcos Galvao in the Bellator bantamweight tournament semifinals, also on October 22. We also discuss how the changing social and political climate in the West will affect the perceptions of the public about MMA, the repercussions of homophobia and misogyny in MMA, and how corporate sponsors might react to these issues. We comment upon the mafia-type culture that may end up being self-destructive for MMA, the standalone business model pursued by many MMA promotions, the growing number of injuries in MMA, the issue of monopolization, and much more.

In addition, we draw some of the lessons from the history of the development of the rules for MMA and apply them to the current discussion about the rules for catch wrestling. And we hear comments from 2011 freestyle wrestling and NCAA champion Jordan Burroughs, who will be competing in the Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico, on October 24.

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