Wednesday, January 22, 2014

No Holds Barred: Canelo, Angulo, Rampage, Trans Athletes, Concussions

(Photo credit of Canelo and Angulo: Esther Lin/Showtime)

On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman discusses the issues of transgender athletes and concussions in combat sports, and previews the Canelo Alvarez-Alfredo Angulo fight and the return to Bellator of Quinton "Rampage" Jackson.

The commentary begins with a brief examination of the issues in the ESPN Grantland article "Dr. V's Magical Putter" about a transgender woman who invented a controversial but popular golf putter. Recommended reading are two essential replies. ESPN writer Christina Kahrl wrote "What Grantland Got Wrong". MMA fighter Fallon Fox wrote, also in reply, "The Wrong Way To Write About Trans People".

Also noted are the different reactions in boxing and MMA to the issue of transgender athletes, and how the fight for rights for transgender people has become a major focus in the general battle for human rights.

Next is a discussion of the issues of concussions in contact and combat sports, the recent string of deaths in MMA, and recreational and performance-enhancing drugs.

Major fights are already being announced for 2014. In boxing, Saul "Canelo" Alvarez, following the first loss of his professional career in September to Floyd Mayweather, returns March 8 to face slugger Alfredo Angulo, in Las Vegas, Nevada. This fight will headline a Showtime pay-per-view in the U.S.

We spoke with both Canelo Alvarez and Alfredo Angulo on a media conference call this week.

In MMA, Quinton "Rampage" Jackson will be entering the four-man Bellator light heavyweight tournament, beginning February 28 at Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Connecticut. He will face former Bellator light heavyweight champion Christian M'Pumbu in the opening round. The other bracket has "King" Mo Lawal facing Mikhail Zayats. These fights will be telecast live in the U.S. on Spike TV.

We spoke with Quinton "Rampage" Jackson on a media conference call this week.

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

No Holds Barred is also available on mobile phones and iPads through Stitcher.

Also, No Holds Barred is available through iTunes.

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:

ONE Fighting Championship. ONE FC is Asia's largest and most prestigious mixed martial arts event. ONE FC features the best Asian fighters and has initiated the ONE Asia Partnership Network, which includes most of the major MMA promotions and MMA gyms in Asia. For more information, go to their web site, at

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