DanaWhitePrePresser_001-460x270When the International Olympic Committee (IOC) voted in February to cut wrestling from the Olympic Games starting in 2020, the decision sent shock waves not only through the wrestling community, but throughout the sports world; perhaps none more so than the mixed martial arts community.

Wrestling is a core component to mixed martial arts.  Several Olympic wrestlers have made their way into MMA, including Daniel Cormier, Matt Lindland, Dan Henderson, Randy Couture, Sarah McMann, among others.  2000 Olympic Games gold medalist Rulon Gardner has one professional MMA bout on his resume as well.

“This is a process of renewing and renovating the program for the Olympics,” IOC spokesman Mark Adams said at the time the decision was made. “In the view of the executive board, this was the best program for the Olympic Games in 2020. It’s not a case of what’s wrong with wrestling, it is what’s right with the 25 core sports.”

Wrestling is on a short-list of eight sports that can argue its case for inclusion in the Games, so there’s still hope for wrestling in the Olympics. The UFC is joining the fight to save wrestling.  The other sports positioning for inclusion are baseball/softball, karate, roller sports, sport climbing, squash, wakeboarding and wushu.

“I’ve met with a lot of top guys in wrestling.  I met with them last Tuesday, and the UFC is joining the fight to help save Olympic wrestling,” said UFC president Dana White on Tuesday.

“Not just Olympic wrestling.  Colleges are dropping wrestling right now.  High schools have been dropping wrestling for a long time.  Myself, I have personally funded tons of wrestling programs and the UFC has funded tons of wrestling programs for high school kids,” said White.

“I can’t be the guy to try and run out and save wrestling,” said White during the UFC on Fuel TV 7 press conference on Feb. 13.

One man can’t save wrestling, but a collective effort potentially can.

“It’s in the discussion phase.  These guys are going out and fighting the fight.  I think what I can do, and not just me and the UFC, but I think other companies like Bellator, too – Viacom owns Bellator, and I think Viacom would be probably interested in fighting the fight too,” said White on Tuesday’s UFC on Fox 7 media conference call.

Ultimately wrestling’s Olympic future rests with the IOC, but there’s still time to convince them that they made a mistake, and still time to get the oldest sport in the world back in the 2020 Games.

view original article >>

Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Dana White Calls Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Conor McGregor Fight 'Impossible'

  • 12 days ago
  • 119 views

UFC President Dana White thinks a Floyd Mayweather Jr.-Conor McGregor fight is impractical. White said on ESPN Radio's Russillo & Kanell that the reason he doesn't see the 49-0 Mayweather taking on t read news >>

Watch the Bellator 154: Davis vs. King Mo Weigh-In Streaming Live at 8 PM ET

  • 12 days ago
  • 6 views

Watch the official Bellator 154: Davis vs. King Mo weigh-in streaming live from San Jose, Calif. at 8 p.m. ET. read news >>

Dana White Comments on UFC Owners' Pursuit of Purchasing NFL Team

  • 12 days ago
  • 8 views

UFC President Dana White denied a Tuesday report from ESPN.com's Darren Rovell suggesting the promotion's majority owners, Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta of Zuffa, are looking to sell the business, but h read news >>

King Mo Happy to Get Paid and Get a Bellator Belt… at Any Weight

  • 12 days ago
  • 8 views

King Mo Lawal is happy as long as he's fighting and getting paid. Of course he wants a Bellator belt, but he's not overly picky about the weight class. read news >>

Josh Paiva Looking to Blow the Bellator Flyweight Division Wide Open

  • 12 days ago
  • 6 views

Top flyweight prospect Josh Paiva is looking to make an impression at Bellator 154, and blow the doors off the promotion's flyweight division. read news >>

Bellator Cuts Lightweight Champ Will Brooks, Strips Heavyweight Champion Vitaly Minakov

  • 11 days ago
  • 276 views

Bellator MMA on Saturday released disgruntled lightweight champion Will Brooks from his contract and stripped the heavyweight belt from Vitaly Minakov. read news >>

Michael Chandler Will Battle Patricky Pitbull for Vacant Bellator Lightweight Title

  • 10 days ago
  • 2 views

Following the release of former lightweight champion Will Brooks, Bellator officials quickly followed up with an announcement to fill the vacancy. read news >>

Bellator Lightweight Champ Will Brooks Released, Fight for Vacant Title Booked

  • 10 days ago
  • 2 views

The Bellator lightweight championship will not be vacant for very long, with the announcement that two familiar names will face off for the strap in June. During Saturday night's broadcast, the promo read news >>

Phil Davis vs. King Mo: Winner and Reaction from Bellator 154

  • 10 days ago
  • 45 views

Phil Davis won a controversial unanimous decision over Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal in the main event at Bellator 154 in San Jose, California, on Saturday. The fight was close, and either man could have read news >>

UFC 198 Results: Jacare Souza Dominates Vitor Belfort, Calls for Title Shot

  • 10 days ago
  • 14 views

Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza dominated Vitor Belfort in the UFC 198 co-main event on Saturday and called for a title shot following the one-sided TKO win. read news >>