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JNPO: How a Chinese UFC champion could change everything


On this week's Josh Nason's Punch-Out, I take a step back on a subject that I admittedly didn't know that much about: MMA's history in China and what a native UFC champion could mean to the country.

Helping me do that is an expert in the area: Dan Shapiro, he of this piece in The Athletic that goes deep into MMA's path to acceptance and the road to this Saturday's debut show in Shenzhen, headlined by strawweight champion Jessica Andrade vs. Weili Zhang. 

We go into Dan's six years living in China including how he helped promote the first MMA shows in the country, why it's not as easy to simply go in and succeed for outsiders in China, people initially confusing WWE and MMA, what Zhang's win could mean for future generations of potential fighters, the main events of the six shows UFC has brought to China, the strangeness of two consecutive strawweight challengers getting their shot in their home country, and more.

Just click below to listen.

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