On Tuesday, the Nevada State Athletic Commission decided to regulate and oversee Dana White’s Power Slap League.
Over the last several years, slap competitions have grown in popularity on social media. Helwani believes that White’s foray into the new market is not as sustainable as he might’ve hoped.
He even compared Vince McMahon’s disastrous journey into the realm of professional bodybuilding to Dana White’s Power Slap League. Helwani noted on a recent broadcast of The MMA Hour:
“You know what this feels like if you’re an old-school wrestling fan? This feels like when Vince McMahon got into the world of bodybuilding. Vince McMahon had his own body-building league, the IBF [or] the International Bodybuilding Federation. And they promoted the hell out of it. And of course, later on the XFL too. And what happened to those two?”
Helwani also said that White and the UFC should take a lesson from McMahon’s unsuccessful expansion leagues. The MMA journalist continued:
“You know Just because you are successful in one thing doesn’t necessarily mean you’re gonna be successful at another thing. Sometimes it’s best to be focused on that thing – stick to your bread and butter.”
Additionally, Ariel Helwani is highly critical of Dana White’s Power Slap League because of the hazard it presents to competitors. For those who don’t know, slap competitions entails two people standing across from one another and slapping each other to the head with their open firsts until one of them is unable to continue. Contestants often get severe concussions in these competitions as a result of the unprotected blows they receive.
“I wonder how they feel about when they talk about safety and all that stuff. It feels a little bit hypocritical to then say, ‘Alright we’re gonna take this thing, sanction it, and let people get nailed in the head repeatedly.’ Let’s see how they regulate it. I don’t think there’s longevity. I don’t think there’s enough interest.”