urt Angle made an appearance on Bellator MMA Thursday night to discuss the International Olympic Committee’s decision to drop wrestling from the Olympics in 2020.
“It’s very frustrating. I can tell you that there a lot of kids out there who want to go to the Olympics. Now it’s been taken away from them,” Angle said cageside at Thursday’s Bellator fight card.
Angle repeated his claim that wrestling has the highest participation since 1980 and is “right behind football.” Angle said that because of the Olympics and MMA, wrestling’s popularity has grown.
Angle added an international appeal, noting this decision affects “200 countries,” especially European countries where their two main sports are wrestling and powerlifting.
After Angle spoke, Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney pushed Bellator’s movement to “save wrestling” at the Olympics, noting they are working with USA Wrestling to appeal to the IOC.