The Invisible Web

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NY Combat Sambo profiled in New York Times

Posted by invizweb on July 24, 2008

(C) Bess Greenberg/The New York Times

My coach in the background. (C) Bess Greenberg/The New York Times

By R.M. SCHNEIDERMAN for the New York Times, Published: July 19, 2008

It was born in the aftermath of the Bolshevik revolution and remained largely a state secret until the collapse of the Soviet Union.

It is called sambo, a Russian acronym that stands for self-defense without weapons, and it is a martial art that combines striking, submissions, throws and weapons disarmament.

Popular in Russia and the former Soviet republics, sambo was relatively unknown in the rest of the world. But over the last five years that has slowly changed in the United States with the increased popularity of mixed martial arts, a sport that counts a number of sambo experts among its elite fighters.

Two such fighters, Fedor Emelianenko and Andrei Arlovski, will participate in a mixed martial arts event Saturday in Anaheim, Calif. Emelianenko, considered by some to be the best fighter in the world, will take on Tim Sylvia, the former heavyweight champion of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. Arlovski, also a former U.F.C. champ, will square off against Ben Rothwell, an American who has dabbled in sambo.

Read more.

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