There has always been something of a mixed reaction to fighting sports. Authorities do not like it, yet the following grows with each passing year, and the general public loves and cheers for it. Once upon a time, not so long ago, the UFC and mixed martial arts walked this path and are now established as two of the most exciting entertainment sports on mainstream TV, and now it is the turn for something even more extreme: bare-knuckle fighting.
Bare-knuckle fighting is exactly what it sounds like, no gloves, all hands, raw unhinged action. It is wild, unscripted, and no holds barred bloody action. Four years since its initial steps, bare-knuckle fighting has just recently been promoted to BKFC 16, with the addition of former UFC star Paige VanZant. While it is still a little-known name, bare-knuckle fighting packs the kinds of raw entertainment that will for certain draw in more fans as it gains a reputation and may just make you want to bet with Sports Interaction and make a buck off the adrenaline.
Now to that Recent Promotion, BKFC 16
Former UFC golden girl, Paige VanZant fell out of favor with Dana White after demanding too much from the organization as the rising face of the women’s division. Losing to Amanda Ribas in 2020, did not make her claim any more convincing and the UFC would part ways with her soon after. Established as a fan-favorite and a great personality, VanZant still finds her popularity intact, something which the BKFC has targeted very well, signing the 26-year old almost as soon as the UFC dropped her. ’12 Gauge’ comes into the promotion as the biggest and most popular name but will need to readjust and show better if she wants to stake her claim and mark her territory. At BKFC 16, VanZant had the opportunity to do just that in her debut against Britain Hart. The fight took a while to catch fire but once it got going, it was all action and blood as both women gave it their all, punch for punch.
Hart used her length and quick jabs to do the most damage to VanZant, who took a ton of it to the face every time she tried to corner or close in on the Virginia native. 12 Gauge showed a much better style in the fifth round, imposing her will, but Hart had done what was necessary in the early rounds and was the winner on points when the final bell sounded.
Former UFC man Johnny Bedford is also on the BKFC payroll and lost to Day Nguyen via a unanimous decision. The fight between Charisa Sigala and Taylor Starling was particularly bloody, with Starling proving to be the more resilient of the two as she won by a unanimous decision. At the same time, MMA legend Chris Leben put a nice icing on his career by knocking out Quentin Henry in his last career fight after announcing his retirement.