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07th Apr 2019

BKFC president rows back on bizarre purse threat

The statement didn't sit well with many watching from home

Darragh Murphy

Bare-knuckle boxing is already facing a seemingly impossible challenge to make itself appear anything close to a legitimate sport

The barbaric nature of the contests has led many to dismiss the recent emergence of bare-knuckle boxing promotions.

And the comments from Dave Feldman, the president of Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship, on Saturday night did absolutely nothing to help that struggle against public perception.

After a dominant unanimous decision victory for Reggie Barnett against Rusty Crowder, Feldman took to the ring to announce that half of Crowder’s purse was going to be given to Barnett because “we want action, and we demand action from the fighters.”

That Feldman intended to breach a pre-agreed contract just because a fight wasn’t as exciting as he’d hoped didn’t sit well with those who were watching the event as the legality of the statement was brought into question.

As expected, however, Feldman has rowed back on that promise and claimed that he only said he was taking half of Crowder’s money in order to light “a fire under every single fighters ass from that point on. Giving you one of the greatest fights you’ll ever see.”

The fight to which Feldman, who assured fans that “no money was taken from any fighters”, was referring to was the main event war between UFC veterans Artem Lobov and Jason Knight.

Both Lobov and Knight were sporting gruesome cuts on Sunday morning after a brutal debut bout, which saw Lobov come out on top via unanimous decision and set up a grudge match against former two-weight world championship boxer Paulie Malignaggi in June.