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XFS Owner Gregg Sharp Tries to Defend “Soccer Mom” Booking, Fails Miserably

We’d like to think we played at least a minor role in the video of the soccer mom getting viciously KO’d going viral over the weekend (as well as the ensuing backlash aimed at Xplode Fight Series for allowing the fight to happen in the first place), even though it turned out that a) The woman in question was not a soccer mom, but actual, “professional” fighter Katie Castro and b) the clip was over 6 months old. What can we say? We *need* validation even in it’s smallest, most insignificant form.

In any case, the utter mismatch that was Castro vs. Macfarlane has raised some major questions regarding Xplode Fight Series’ well-documented history of questionable fight booking, with many people (mainly us) calling for the promotion to be held responsible for their disgraceful actions, if not shut down entirely.

Enter XFS owner Gregg Sharp, who attempted to quell the fires surrounding his promotion/the matchup in an interview with the aptly-named CollateralDamageMMA late last week. Without spoiling too much, I will say that his response to the backlash was exactly the kind of sickening, take-no-responsibility bullshit that you’d expect from a guy who willingly put his personal seal of approval on the above nonsense.

His initial defense, I kid you not, is as follows:

I actually thought this would have been a bigger deal 6 months ago the way we seem to have so many “FANS” out there, but I am not naive in the fact that sooner or later a hater or two would jump on to our YouTube account and make something of nothing.

I was never part of my high school’s debate team, but if I was, I’m pretty sure that “Don’t open by immediately contradicting yourself, then writing off the offense in question as ‘something out of nothing’” would be covered on the first day.

“Your honor, so what if some dumb broad was nearly beheaded at one of my client’s events. Haters gonna hate, big whoop wannafightaboutit?”

CollateralMMA: Do you really think that “Nothing” is the term to use on the video?

Sharp: Yes I believe that nothing is the correct term to deal with this one. Let’s strip the names and gender away and take an objective look around the world of MMA… A 0-0 fighter debuted against a 0-2 fighter and the knockout was vicious. Does this not happen on every level of MMA short of the UFC? Of course it does.

Ah, the old “Don’t hate the player, hate the game” defense, which, aside from being a completely asinine way of removing yourself from all responsibility, doesn’t really work when said 0-2 fighter has competed both times under your organization and been KO’d on both occasions in under 1 minute.

“Look, Timmy, it’s not that I want to stick your pledge paddle up your ass sideways, it’s that I have to because tradition. I mean, do you want to be an Alpha Sig or what?!!”

Ilima Macfarlance who makes her Pro debut is a terrific amateur fighter, Katie Castro who at the time is 0-2 is a not so terrific fighter, but a willing and game competitor…Ilima’s opponent pulls out, she has family that has flown in from Hawaii and across the country and we all have a decision to make.

“What were we supposed to do? Just pay this clearly superior fighter her win/show money and disappoint the tens of people who paid to see her throw down? THEY WANT BLOOD DAMMIT!!”

Collateral: Do you think it was a good match-up?

Sharp: I am sorry but this happened SIX months ago, we are not going to or can go back and change what transpired. It was a good decision at the time, but it seems that with so many Promotions finding it hard to attract fans and fighters one might assume this is now and issue done more out of trying to defame or discredit XFS so that they can try and re-fill their cards rather than a genuine concern for the sport. Either way I am not going to run from people criticizing or critiquing XFS.

So now it’s…the fans fault that this happened? Rival promotions, maybe? Sharp is acting like this fight was a rare instance of a respected promotion allowing a matchup to slip through the cracks, when in reality it’s just the opposite. If anything, XFS is only notorious for booking ridiculously lopsided matches.

Take Walel Watson, for instance, who followed up his 4-fight stint in the UFC by facing Anthony Moore (0-14) and Joey Apodaca (0-9) in back-to-back XFS appearances. Or Strikeforce/Bellator vet Keith Berry, who fought 0-0 Josh Gibson in what was billed as a middleweight title fight back in 2012. FYI, Gibson’s record currently sits at 0-6, with 5 of those appearances coming by first round stoppage under the XFS banner.

This is not some fluke. This is an organization with a shady track record of operating outside the regulatory system and using that freedom to exploit and endanger.

Collateral: But people say that if this was a commission show this would not have happened! What do you say to that?

Sharp: Ok please explain then how Cody Sons who was 0-1 as a pro 0-3 in his last 3 as an ammy, So 0-4 in his last 4 was sanctioned to fight John Paul Elias 3-0 in Bellator 133 in Fresno under CSAC? Are you saying that XFS is now being held to a higher standard than the matchmakers at Bellator and CSAC? Is this not an egregious match up that was actually matched and accepted three weeks prior to the show? Did someone out there other than Cody actually think he was going to win?

“How many times do I have to say this until it makes sense to you people? If enough people agree that infanticide is an acceptable form of entertainment, then what am I suppose to do, *not* make money off baby murder? My hands are tied!”

Collateral: So, are you justifying your actions with other promotions? That is a tough justification on any level.

Sharp: Not at all, I am merely stating the facts. If you are saying that XFS is the only promotion in the world that has kept a fight on the card by working with a last minute fighter then you are crazy. If you are saying that Athletic commissions make sure that this does not happen then you are certifiable. Honestly there are fighters in other promotions that have been built up so that their “promotional hometown hero’s” or the family of the matchmaker/promoter will beat an opponent with a winning record. Now that resonates on all levels of MMA! Making me the center of the witch hunt is extremely humorous!

Right, except you are quite literally justifying your actions based on other promotions. That’s what it means when you point your finger at someone else when you yourself are backed into a corner. At this point, Sharp’s defense is basically the same shallow justification Hizdahr zo Loraq tried to use on Tyrion Lannister (re: the fighting pits, of all things) in last week’s Thrones. He was similarly shut down.

“It’s an unpleasant question, but what great thing has ever been accomplished without killing or cruelty?” — Loraq

“It’s easy to confuse what is with what ought to be, especially when what is has worked out in your favor.” — Tyrion

“You know they’re still doing trials-by-combat in Westeros. Just sayin’.” — Sharp

Collateral: What is the solution then?

Sharp: Why do I need to create a solution? How about this… introduce me to an Oil tycoon’s son and allow me access to 20 million dollars and I will take XFS to the next level, return your investment with interest and create a new dynamic for all the fighters in Southern California. Sound good? Well let’s be honest that equation did not work out to well for one Texas based promotion did it? Unfortunately I guess I am not that lucky.

“I have proved myself to be nothing but a deplorable, ignorant individual who values putting money in my own pocket over the safety of the people my organization is charged with protecting, but if you give me more money, everything will be better!”

Public opinion at best is slated to a plethora of keyboard warriors and “craven’s who sit at the battles edge” and cast mean-spirited comments with the hopes of hurting someone’s feelings and in the end nothing gets fixed, so we can’t go to a public consensus on it. I guess I could start a GoFundMe account like everyone else that believes that social media begging is a lot better than getting a job and working for your dreams and ask to raise 20 million, nah I would rather work than to beg….

I will continue to run XFS until I feel we have finished our mission and we are ready to move on. If people want to write about me go ahead, I just delete their comments anyway, actually I have staff that does that so please don’t get too excited that you are talking to me.

Wow. Just…wow.

“This isn’t a democracy, and even if it was, your opinions and concerns about FIGHTER SAFETY AND REGULATION are clearly just jealousy manifesting itself in a couple nerdy Youtube comments, so if you’ll excuse me…”

(*throws on headphones*) (*cranks “Slow Ride”*)

“LALALALALALAAA CAN’T HEAR YOU!!!”

Gregg Sharp, you are pond scum.

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