Don King

Don King rips boxing federation’s plan for professionals in Olympics

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Famed promoter Don King criticized the International Amateur Boxing Association (AIBA) for its proposed league that will allow pro boxers to compete in the Olympics.

“This policy is not only implausible; it is immoral, harmful and highly dangerous!” King, 81, said as part of a 900-word statement on his website.

Professional boxers are not currently allowed in the Olympics, but the AIBA plan is to have boxers join its league rather than sign with promoters, such as King.

Current pro fighters would have to join the AIBA league at least two years prior to the Olympics and remain in it for at least two years after the Games to be eligible, according to Agence France-Press.

“I am extremely concerned by the commandeering of those participating in the Olympics by the AIBA,” King wrote. “Their policy demanding that participants sign exclusive PROFESSIONAL contracts with AIBA in order to participate in the Olympics is tantamount to monopoly, coercion and restraint of trade.”

King also argued that pitting AIBA professionals against the regular mix of amateur Olympic boxers could be problematic.

“While it is accepted in team sports such as basketball and football, professionals and amateurs competing together and against other teams, at best, it can result in an upset, amateurs beating the professionals; or at worst, it can result in an embarrassing score by the professionals over the amateurs,” King wrote. “But in boxing, it is man to man. There is no upside; and the downside has GRAVE implications: a professional boxer fighting an amateur boxer removes all safety, and absolutely contradicts your edict of banning violence by promoting violence, which could result in a career ending injury, paralysis, or death.”

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Equestrian horses begin boarding airplanes for Rio Olympics

Olympic horse travel
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The first group of horses set to compete in the Rio Olympic equestrian events boarded a Boeing 777-F and departed from London’s Stansted Airport on Friday.

In all, 34 horses from 10 nations were part of the first of nine shipments delivering more than 200 horses to Rio. That’s nearly 20 tons of horses on Friday’s shipment alone.

Horses will also depart from Liege, Belgium, and Miami ahead of the Olympic competition.

More information on horse travel to Rio is available here from the International Equestrian Federation.

MORE: Complete U.S. Olympic team roster

Olympic horse travel

Entire Russian weightlifting team banned from Olympics

Weightlifting
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BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — The International Weightlifting Federation has banned the Russian federation and all its weightlifters from the Rio Olympics.

The IWF said Friday the multiple cases of doping by Russian weightlifters have “seriously damaged” the integrity of the sport. The eight Russian Olympic spots have been offered to other countries.

The IWF said the doping results produced by Russian weightlifters are “extremely shocking and disappointing.”

Russia, China, North Korea and Kazakhstan are the world’s top four weightlifting nations.

MORE: U.S. Olympic weightlifting team complete