Thursday, December 9, 2021

Chris Leben Has High Hopes For WBKFF’s Future

Chris Leben believes the world of bare knuckle fighting has a long and healthy future.

Leben headlined the first World Bare Knuckle Fighting Federation (WBKFF) event earlier this month. The former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) middleweight took on Phil Baroni in a light heavyweight clash. Leben earned a first-round TKO victory.

Chris Leben Speaks On The Future Of WBKFF

BJPenn.com recently caught up with “The Crippler.” Leben talked about the success of WBKFF and the promotion’s future:

“I think it’s gonna be a hit. Think about the average fan and what they love about the UFC. You don’t have to be a martial arts expert to enjoy a fist fight. And that’s what bare-knuckle boxing is. It’s all the good stuff. [On WBKFF 1 having an old school UFC feel], that’s what everybody’s been saying. It’s funny, I was just talking to Mark Coleman, and he said that this reminded him of when he was supposed to fight Dan Severn in New York, and they had to switch the venue. He was just saying the same thing, and that’s from someone who was there.”

Things looked a bit shaky for WBKFF ahead of their first event. Shawne Merriman and Brennan Ward were both scheduled to compete on the card, but they bailed due to contract disputes. Merriman said the promotion didn’t honor his contract, while Ward said he doubted anyone would be paid at all. WBKFF president Bas Rutten released a statement saying a mess was created before he even stepped in.

Do you think WBKFF will last?

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