Since its heyday in the late 1800s, bare-knuckle boxing in the US has been relegated to parking lots and grimy basements, an underground sport that couldn’t find a way to bring itself above board. But in June of 2018—after spending years petitioning almost 30 states to sanction the brutal fights—promoter David Feldman finally managed to stage America’s first-ever legal bare-knuckle boxing match in Wyoming.
VICE went to the Bare Knuckle Fighting Championships in Cheyenne a few days ahead of the big event to hear how Feldman managed to pull it off, and to meet a handful of fighters for whom boxing—and even MMA fighting—just isn’t hardcore enough.
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