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Sports doctor speaks out against slap fighting, calls it 'as risky of a sport as possible' for brain injuries

Jayden Collins

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Sports doctor speaks out against slap fighting, calls it 'as risky of a sport as possible' for brain injuries

A leading sports medicine physician has questioned why the Nevada Athletic Commission decided to regulate slap fighting while calling the sport ‘absurd and senseless’.

Dr Brian Sutterer, who educates about sports medicine and injury on his YouTube channel, has had his say on UFC opening their own Power Slap League while blasting the sport of slap fighting.

He claimed the sport was ‘perhaps the most absurd and senseless sport in the world’.

He told viewers: “I don’t think any commission should be backing slap fighting.

“I think it’s one of the most senseless, unnecessarily risky and dangerous sports.”

Last month the UFC announced its arrival on the slapping scene, unveiling their newest promotion called ‘Power Slap’.

It was recently announced that mixed martial arts' premium promotion had made a presentation to the Nevada Athletic Commission (NAC) outlining their desire to enter the slap space.

And after the NAC agreed to welcome the exciting sport into its jurisdiction, the UFC wasted no time in bringing their vision to life.

It’s a move that Sutterer believes is dangerous, as unlike traditional combat sports, the rules of fighting make it impossible to defend one’s self.

He said: “What do we always say here in combat sports whether it’s boxing, mixed martial arts or whatever?

“It’s ‘protect yourself at all times’.

“Fighters, while they’re trying to inflict damage on one another and you might say the injuries that are possible in mixed martial arts are worse looking than the injuries in slap fighting, in slap fighting there is no defence.

“You literally are not allowed to protect yourself. And so what you get is basically just two people trading concussive blows for one another.”

He explained that while ‘slapping’ someone isn’t typically associated with injury, the nature of the slaps in the sport are ‘basically an open-handed punch’.

He said: “If you strike someone with more of the hard bones of the wrist or the carpus, it’s really no different than just punching someone.

“Your wrist bones sit right underneath this lower portion of the palm.

“So if you make contact with someone’s face striking with that portion of your wrist, it’s not a slap at all.

“It’s essentially the equivalent to an open-handed punch.”

Adding: “This is just trading concussive blow for concussive blow with no seeming, like, competitive advantage you can get from trying to defend yourself like you might have in other sports.”

Dana White’s Power Slap League is expected to hold its first event at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas before the end of 2022.

SPORTbible reached out to the UFC for comment.

Featured Image Credit: UFC/Instagram.

Topics: UFC, MMA, Dana White

Jayden Collins
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