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Wednesday, May 08, 2019

No Holds Barred: John Perretti on His Life and Memoir, "The Origin Of A Species and Mixed Martial Arts" 


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.

His long-awaited autobiography and memoir has recently been released. It is called The Origin Of A Species and Mixed Martial Arts.

We spoke with him by phone Tuesday.

This book covers so many topics and so much territory that we had to limit our discussion, which for this show was about one hour and 20 minutes long, just to subjects related to the martial arts, combat sports, and of course mixed martial arts, a term which he first coined. But John Perretti's life and interests included so many other areas, including the arts and history in general, and also how they are related to the martial arts and combat sports, that a thorough examination of all of them would be impossible in one sitting. For that you are strongly encouraged to purchase and read this book, which is a must-read, especially for those concerned with the past, present, and future of the martial arts and combat sports, their real history, and what should be kept and discarded in all of them.

In particular, since so much of the media devoted to the martial arts and combat sports is controlled by various corrupt promoters, the actual role of John Perretti in them has been, to use his term, largely "redacted from MMA history". We thus put out a challenge to those in the media who are sincere about understanding and truthfully reporting on and analyzing the martial arts and combat sports to follow our lead and interview John Perretti and review his book.

We discussed how his experiences as a boy were key to developing his passion for the martial arts and combat sports, how he devoted himself to finding out just what worked and what didn't in real life in them, his introduction to grappling and Gene LeBell, how he developed the basic framework and format of modern mixed martial arts in Battlecade Extreme Fighting, his one-and-done but historic grappling show called The Contenders, his trying to position MMA as a sport and not a spectacle, his exit from MMA, the role of his old gym called Madison Avenue Muscle, the health problems he has today resulting from a lifetime in the martial arts and combat sports, and much, much, much more.

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