Amateur wrestling will soon be getting a showmanship makeover.
According to an article on MMAJunkie.com, UFC president Dana White and Bellator’s Bjorn Rebney met with former world wrestling champion Bill Scherr, who is the chairman of the Committee for the Preservation of Olympic Wrestling this past week. Both the UFC and Bellator have been throwing public support behind the “Save Olympic Wrestling” campaign, offering strategic partnerships and getting the word out on their programming.
Several committee members feel that a makeover of some aspects of the sport will make it more appealing to fans; like their MMA counterparts. The President of FILA wrestling, Nenad Lalovic, stated that something needs to be done to make the sport be more marketable.
Ideas being thrown around include public weigh-ins; face-offs; music and lighting for entrances for wrestlers; and replacing the traditional singlets with shorts (this will actually be decided next year).
The FILA committee is expected to make changes this weekend in a meeting in Moscow. One of the expected changes is that women will be getting two more weight classes. It is expected that both weight classes will fall in between 50-74 kg. Greco-Roman and Freestyle men’s wrestling will be giving up a weight class to compensate.
With the growing popularity of women’s amateur wrestling, especially in the U.S., it is no surprise that the FILA committee has decided to expand the division.
We will have more info next week on what exact changes will be implemented.
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