Dana White’s new slap fighting league gets banged up by an expert

Dana White’s new slap fighting league gets banged up by an expert

Dana White’s controversial power slap league drew criticism from fight fans and non-fans alike and is now being condemned by a leading neuroscientist.

Chris Nowinski, a Harvard Ph.D. and former wrestler who has criticized the sports world’s handling of concussions, recently criticized a clip in which a fighter, Chris Kennedy, appeared to be showing immediate signs of a significant head injury known as a fencing stance.

“This is so sad,” tweeted Nowinski, the co-founder and president of the Concussion Legacy Foundation. “Note the fencing stance at the first brain injury. He may never be the same.”

Dana White’s controversial power slap league drew criticism from fight fans and non-fans alike and is now being condemned by a leading neuroscientist

Chris Nowinski, a Harvard Ph.D.  and former wrestler who has criticized the sports world's handling of concussions, recently criticized a clip in which a fighter, Chris Kennedy, appeared to be showing immediate signs of a significant head injury known as a fencing stance

Chris Nowinski, a Harvard Ph.D. and former wrestler who has criticized the sports world’s handling of concussions, recently criticized a clip in which a fighter, Chris Kennedy, appeared to be showing immediate signs of a significant head injury known as a fencing stance

In a fencing stance or fencing reaction, the victim’s hands shoot into an unnatural position, with the forearms bent outward.

Nowinski, who also played college football for Harvard, took aim at White, the promoter, and TBS, which broadcasts the brutal competition.

“@danawhite & @TBSNetwork should be ashamed,” added Nowinski. “Pure exploitation. What’s next, ”Who can survive a stabbing?”

The sport was first popularized in Eastern Europe three years ago with a series of viral videos starring 370-pound Russian sensation Vasiliy Khamotiskiy.

Khamotiskiy, known as “Dumpling,” was seen in video knocking out a massive opponent to win 30,000 rubles, which was about $475 at the time. Other viral videos show dumpling training by crushing watermelons and flipping tractor tires.

In a fencing stance or fencing reaction, the victim's hands shoot into an unnatural position, with the forearms bent outward

In a fencing stance or fencing reaction, the victim’s hands shoot into an unnatural position, with the forearms bent outward

Nowinski (pictured), who also played college football for Harvard, took aim at White, the promoter, and TBS, which airs the brutal competition

Nowinski (pictured), who also played college football for Harvard, took aim at White, the promoter, and TBS, which airs the brutal competition

White, who has faced backlash after video surfaced of him beating his wife at a New Year's Eve party in Mexico, has defended PowerSlap, insisting health and safety measures are taken seriously

White, who has faced backlash after video surfaced of him beating his wife at a New Year’s Eve party in Mexico, has defended PowerSlap, insisting health and safety measures are taken seriously

Fighters are completely defenseless in slap fighting events, which has raised concerns

Fighters are completely defenseless in slap fighting events, which has raised concern

The social media presence helped push the sport into a pay-per-view event, but things turned tragic in October 2021 when a Polish slap fighter and bodybuilder named Artur “Waluś” Walczak was punched four times and one Cerebral hemorrhage suffered a Punchdown event in Wrocław, Poland. The 46-year-old was taken to hospital, put into a medically-induced coma and eventually died of multi-organ failure in November, according to Polish reports.

As a result, Polish authorities launched an investigation into the safety conditions for participants at Punchdown 5, while organizers insisted that Walczak’s health was a top priority after his fourth and final knockdown.

“The competitor [Walczak] remained conscious, but the troubling neurological symptoms observed by rescuers prompted them to call emergency services,” Punchdown said in a statement.

Punchdown has since changed its name to Slap Fighting Championship.

Other slap promotions have been around longer than White’s Circuit, including Missouri-based SlapFight.

In October 2021, tragedy struck when a Polish slap fighter named Artur

In October 2021, tragedy struck when a Polish slap fighter named Artur “Waluś” Walczak (pictured) was knocked down four times and suffered a brain hemorrhage at a “Punchdown” event in Wrocław, Poland. The 46-year-old was reportedly rushed to hospital, put into a medically induced coma and eventually died of multiple organ failure in November

White, who has faced backlash after video surfaced of him beating his wife at a New Year’s Eve party in Mexico, has defended PowerSlap, insisting health and safety measures are taken seriously.

“We’re spending the money to make sure we have two healthy people there and get proper medical care during and after the fight,” White said. “These are all things that we need to educate people about, just like we needed to educate people about mixed martial arts.”

As White told Just The Fights, he believes slap fighting is safer than boxing, which allows fighters to defend themselves while being slapped hundreds of times in one fight.

Punch fights, on the other hand, usually involve only a few punches per fight, although fighters are forbidden from defending themselves.

“In the slap, they get three to five slaps per competition. Fighters in boxing take 300-400 punches per fight. And guess what: you know what my answer to that is? If you don’t fucking like it, don’t watch it.

Comsa stood with his hands raised after being crowned the champion of the competition

Comsa stood with his hands raised after being crowned the champion of the competition

RULES FOR STRIKE FIGHTING

Two competitors stand on a podium and exchange slaps

The duel will be observed by three judges – two will watch the fight directly and one will analyze the replays

Each participant must wear mouth and ear protection

There are 3 rounds in the fight – in each of them the participant gets one hit

Supporters must be close to the contestant to prevent them from falling after a hit

Before the shot, the players rub talcum powder on their hands

Foot position must be maintained before, during and after the shot

It is forbidden to hit the temple, eye socket, nose, ear and larynx

The judges make the final, irrevocable decision of the fight

Competitors may also win by KO, TKO, or disqualification

‘Nobody’s asking you to look at it. Oh, you’re disgusted with that? Watch The Voice.

A fighter was left with a disfigured face at a recent Slap Fighting Championship event in Romania, but he received some praise from UFC legend Conor McGregor.

A video clip from the tournament went viral and showed Sorin Comsa receiving a brutal blow to the head, disabling him.

In the clip, which happened to be the final of the tournament, Comsa takes on Alexandru Gorczyca. The latter waits before landing a flush open-palm punch at his opponent.

Comsa immediately looked dazed and put his hand to his temple – seemingly complaining about the validity of the strike before continuing.

McGregor analyzed Gorczyca’s brutal punch and tweeted, “Absolutely great technique congratulations to the new heavyweight champion.”

Despite the heavy punch in the video clip, Comsa beat his opponent to win a title and around $5,500.