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A Look at Bare Knuckled Boxing

The words “bare knuckle boxing” probably invoke visions of corny looking old-timey fighters throwing down in tight pants or drunken bar patrons getting stomped by Patrick Swayze in the 1980s film classic Roadhouse.

While people are still getting their tails handed to them in bars all across the world everyday (except no longer by the Swayz, RIP), most people assume that actual bare knuckle boxing matches, the kind you could pay money to watch in person, went away when gloves were brought into the professional boxing equation. But many of you will be surprised to know that this is not the case.

Here are seven things you should know about bare knuckle boxing…

It Still Exists

The last officially sanctioned bare knuckle boxing match happened in 1897, but that doesn’t mean that fighting purists ever gave up on the idea of squaring off sans gloves for sport. As we speak, there’s still a World Bare Knuckle Boxing Association. They have a website and everything, so you know they’re legit! According to the site, they hold John L. Sullivan, the winner of that fabled 1897 bare knuckle match, in the highest regard. Here’s a quote…

“For nearly 123 years Sullivan’s title remained vacant until former seven time cruiserweight champion Bobby “The Celtic Warrior” Gunn defeated Richard Stewart to claim the linear title.”

That’s right, there’s a reigning bare knuckle boxing world champion, Bobby Gunn. With a name like that, you better be able to fight.

So, yes, bare knuckle boxing still exists. But…

Don’t Take That to Mean It’s “Legal”

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