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Sunday, August 30, 2015

Soccer Mom MMA KO video sparks investigation





I think we all remember flinching with horror as pudgy "soccer mom" Katie Castro got starched by a professionally trained fighter at Xplode Fight Series.
XFS owner Gregg Sharp publicly defended the spectacle as the video quickly went viral, saying the video was actually shot six months earlier and that "if we were not in San Diego, no one would care."
Well, somebody seems to care now. According to an in-depth story by MMAfighting.com, the video has sparked an investigation by the California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) into unsanctioned events like XFS.
CSAC is considering sanctions against fighters who compete in these unregulated, Native American reservation shows, and will also look into whether some promoters like Sharp are committing criminal acts.
Although Native American reservations are beyond the jurisdiction of the CSAC, it can pull the license of fighters who participate in such events.
Jessica Penne, a UFC women's strawweight top contender, attended the January 2015 event to support a competing friend and was shocked at what she witnessed.
"We've come a long way from barnyard fights and all these crazy backyard fights. Our sport is so much better than that. We are athletes and I think we should hold ourselves to another standard. By supporting that kind of show, I think it holds us back. We deserve to fight in better organizations than that, in better venues than that, get paid better than that. People that continue to fight in these organizations, it's just devaluing us."
However, Sharp remains defiant that despite the fact Castro looked ill-prepared for the fight she's a "street fighter" and "far from a soccer mom." He contends that use of the term "soccer mom," which began with the website BJPenn.com, has been the main reason for the controversy.
"The quality of the fight turned out to be poor and unfortunately we're in the position we're in now. If that fight ended in a rear-naked choke in 42 seconds, this wouldn't be the same case."
Part two of a three-part investigation into this story from MMA reporter Marc Raimondi continues this weekend at MMAfighting.com.