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Kurt Angle in the IFL?

If you’re sick of stories about Kurt Angle possibly doing MMA then you might want to grab a barf bag if you continue to read this.

But Angle was at the IFL finals (I actually got a text message during a stopover in Vegas yesterday from my editor at, Denny Burkholder, letting me know Kurt was there and very visible) last night and Alex Marvez from was able to catch up with him.

I recommend you check out Alex’s article by clicking here.

Apparently, Angle is now teasing the possibility of being a part of the IFL:

“God willing, the IFL and myself can make a deal,” Angle told while attending the promotion’s team championship finale Thursday night at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino. “The best fit for me right now as a pro wrestler who [works] about 120 times a year is the IFL.”

Huh? Kurt, IFL fighters are some of the busiest in MMA with the key guys fighting 5-7 times a year. The IFL has gotten away from super fights so unless they go back to that model, I don’t see how it’s the best fit for him now.

There is one area where I could see Kurt being a good fit:

Angle, 38, has toyed with the idea of competing in mixed martial arts since leaving World Wrestling Entertainment in August 2006 to join Total Nonstop Action Wrestling. Angle said the IFL’s 12-team format is appealing because he could “start coaching and while doing that learn from my students.”

Yes, I think Angle would be a great IFL coach and I know a lot of you are going to jump down my throats about that, but hear me out. Could Kurt teach young fighters about MMA? Certainly not. He could help their wrestling but he doesn’t have the credentials to be an MMA coach. However, there’s more to being a head coach in the IFL than just coaching. A lot of the coaches add star power to the promotion and serve as ambassadors for the organization.

Angle as a coach makes sense from the standpoint that he could get paid to be involved with MMA without fighting and the IFL would have a nice PR component. Angle would bring them a lot of press. They could also work him into the mix as a TV analyst too if they really wanted to benefit from an association with Angle.

As far as the actual day-to-day coaching, simply hire top assistants. It’s kind of like the NFL where some coaches are figureheads who are hands off and rely heavily on their offensive and defensive coordinators as opposed to some coaches who are more hands on. With quality assistants, Kurt could get away with being a hands-off figurehead type coach.

But in reality, who knows if he’s serious. How many times have we been down this road with Angle? He’s hand plenty of chances to jump in and still hasn’t done it. The older he gets, the less likely it becomes. Is this nothing more than a way to get himself some press and boost his star power as a wrestler? I think many of us (although not all of us) allow ourselves to believe Kurt is serious about MMA just because from a fan perspective we want to see it happen so badly. If we really removed ourselves from it and thought about it, I think we’d realize that there’s no shot of Angle doing MMA.

And hey, if I’m wrong, Kurt, please prove me wrong.

The funny thing is that there’s a lot of behind-the-scenes talk of a match between Daniel Puder vs. Angle. I’ve heard different promotions talk about the idea but I think they might be taking Angle’s MMA talk more seriously than they should. And there’s also the fact that Puder has a new six-fight, 18-month contract with Strikeforce. I’m not sure if he’s allowed to fight outside of it but Gilbert Melendez is exclusive to Strikeforce right now so I would assume a six-fight deal for Puder includes exclusivity.

So different promotions have floated Puder vs. Angle but there’s only one that can legally make it happen (Strikeforce).

There was also a lot of talk of a future showdown between Angle vs. Brock Lesnar, which Angle addressed in Marvez’s article:

Angle had tried negotiating with different MMA organizations to work a match against Brock Lesnar, another former amateur and pro wrestling star who has branched into legitimate fighting. Angle, though, said those negotiations fell through when Lesnar signed a contract with the UFC.

“We figured we would make somebody a hell of a lot of money,” Angle said. “We were talking about it, but Brock jumped the gun and went to UFC right away and struck a deal. I don’t blame him. The kid honestly wants to do three or four fights and retire. He’s going to make that kind of money. I give him a lot of credit for that.

Angle states that Brock is definitely with the UFC. Well, that announcement hasn’t been made official and in that regard, I’m not so sure if Angle is the most credible source. But even if Lesnar is UFC-bound, why can’t it still happen?

Kurt has bragged about beating Lesnar when the two wrestled in a parking lot while the two were with the WWE. Angle vs. Lesnar promoted by the UFC machine would be huge business. If Angle really wanted to fight Lesnar, why would you do it anywhere besides the UFC considering they are the kings of MMA pay-per-view right now?

Another thing I want to touch on is that Angle and Lesnar are actually better friends than they’ve let on publicly. They’ve teased a shoot match for years now. Well, you’ve invested all that time into building it up so why not give all the fans (and yourselves) the big payoff?

I don’t know, maybe I shouldn’t even waste my time with this stuff because Angle has been doing the MMA song and dance too long now. Don’t talk about it, be about it.

  • […] » Unofficial Miami Dolphins Fan Blog wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerpt in mixed martial arts since leaving World Wrestling Entertainment in August 2006 to join Total […]

  • jt says:

    NFL coaches are ALWAYS more than figureheads to a team. There is not a single NFL coach that is not involved on a daily basis with the oversight of the offense and defense. NFL head coaches are in their positions because they are among the smartest football minds anywhere. Kurt Angle would be a great heands-off coach if he knew anything about MMA. The Dallas Cowboys wouldn’t hire Olympic sprinter Michael Johnson, the world’s former fastest man, to be a head coach simply because he was well known and was really good at running, (which is at least part of football right)??

    I jest in fun, but come on Sam. Kurt Angle missed the boat when it comes to MMA. He chose a different career path and has been fairly successful at it. Now for Angle to want a piece of MMA, or for you to think that for some reason he deserves to be in a high profile position within the MMA community is a little bit offensive im sure to the other IFL coaches who have spend a large majority of their careers within MMA.

    You watched alot of wrestling in your day, i think.

  • el boxeo says:

    to jt..

    there are alot of head coaches that delegate tremedous amout of power to thier assistants… they may be involved on with an oversight of the offense and defense but that dont mean alot.. so are owners and they wouldnt be would never be considered head coaches…

    Among the smartest football minds anywhere when it comes to certain parts… you thnk mike martz gives two cents about defense.. or art shell as a great football coach…

    angle specialty is wrestling which i would imagine he is better than 80% of mma fighters right now and im sure him being a wrestler, he might have conditioning advantages… dont know why he needs to be an all around mma bjj , judo , total package to be successful as a coach….

  • el boxeo says:

    fact is this is angle’s best and only way to be involved in mma… angles name alone dwarfs many in mma in terms of making money.. i know that might not mean alot but alot of these promoters are looking at him to make money the same way there look at lesner…

    imo angle has too much to lose to go in there and fight and end up ala ken shamrock and while im sure he would get worked in an mma ring, i dont really know anyone that would expect more from angle than being a coach .. i mean the guy has made more money than most ufc fighters, has had some huge neck problems and is def more worn out physically cause of professional wrestling…. what did marvin hagler say, something like ” its harder to get up an train early in the morning when your sleeping in silk pj” …

    angle already made alot of money already and “competing” in professional wrestling i imagine is alot easier cause you know whats gonna happen as opposed to flipping a coin in a competative mma match…

    but coaching would be perfect for him and the ifl gain alot of exposure… as far as sam comment that the ifl might have too many fights in a year and could conflict with his pro wrestling.. that might be the case if it was the wwe and theyre on the road for 200 + days … but i think tna is taped once a week and those tapings are for like two weeks of programming… i think the reason he went there was cause it was pretty much no travel and wear and tear…


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