A day after hearing of the International Olympic Committee's decision to drop wrestling from the 2020 Olympics, people in the Atlanta wrestling community were still in disbelief that the sport could be removed from the world's biggest stage for athletics.
"It's a big heartbreak," said Darren Cotton, a trainer at the Buckhead YMCA who is also training for a chance to wrestle at the 2016 Olympics. "Of all the sports that could have been pulled, wrestling, it doesn't make sense to me. It's one of the purest forms of athletic competition."
"At first I thought it was a joke," said Billy Maldonado, the wrestling coach at the Lovett School. "It would be like telling someone now that the NFL is shut down, what would football players do?"
The sport of wrestling is one of the longest-running events in the Olympics, going back to when it was featured in the first modern-day games, in 1896.
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