Kyle Dake to wrestle Bubba Jenkins in freestyle at Grapple At The Garden in New York City, Dec. 1

<< Back to Articles
Larry Torres (Madison Square Garden)


Tickets on Sale Now

New York, NY, September 27, 2013 — Four-time NCAA National Champion, Kyle Dake, will face off against 2011 NCAA National Champion, Bubba Jenkins, in a much-anticipated freestyle wrestling main event on December 1 at the second annual Grapple at the Garden, presented by, MSG Sports announced today.  

In a unique senior level showcase match promoted in association with X-Cel Worldwide, Dake, the former Cornell standout who became the first wrestler in NCAA history to win the national championship in four different weight classes, will square off against Jenkins, the former NCAA wrestling national champion and a current mixed martial arts fighter.  

Tickets start at $20.00 and can be purchased at the Madison Square Garden box office, all Ticketmaster outlets and online at  

"It is very exciting to once again compete on one of the greatest stages in the world, in one of the greatest cities in the world,” said Dake.  “Personally, I am also really excited to compete against Bubba Jenkins. As a two-time NCAA national finalist, all wrestling fans know he is a great competitor. This year's Grapple at the Garden event will be groundbreaking for the sport of wrestling, and promises to inspire thousands of young athletes as they chase their dreams."

Jenkins added, "I am super excited about taking my wrestling talents to the biggest and baddest city in the world to showcase my skills under the bright lights of the illustrious Madison Square Garden.  It is a tremendous honor to have been chosen to wrestle in the Grapple at the Garden event, and one which I take with immense pride and will never forget. As my fans and friends already know, I am a big match, big move athlete. Come December 1, while wrestling one of the greatest wrestlers our sport has ever seen, Kyle Dake, New York City sports fans will learn that about me as well. I am humbled to compete in this historic freestyle wrestling match in The World's Most Famous Arena."

"X-Cel Worldwide is honored to be associated with the promotion of such a great event in the most famous arena in the world,” said Nick Garone President, X-Cel Worldwide.  “Kyle Dake vs. Bubba Jenkins is match-up certain to be filled with fireworks.  The Grapple at the Garden will make history with the first ever Freestyle Wrestling main event in Madison Square Garden." 

Joining Army, Bloomsburg, Boston University, Cornell, Drexel, George Mason, Hofstra, Illinois, Maryland, Penn, Princeton and Rutgers will be four local wrestling programs including Stevens Institute of Technology and NYU in an NCAA Division III matchup, as well as a match between the men’s club teams from Stony Brook University and Westchester Community College.  This will bring the total to an unprecedented 16 teams for the one-day dual-meet event.  

In addition to the action-packed collegiate matchups, the second annual Grapple at the Garden, presented by, will also feature the finals of the Beat The Streets PSAL Thanksgiving Dual Meet Invitational. All 16 participating high schools including Horace Mann, Monsignor Farrell, Brooklyn Tech, Poly Prep, Benjamin Cardoza, Martin Luther King, Eagle Academy, Fordham Prep, James Madison, New Utrecht, Petrides, Martin Luther, Mt. St. Michael, Wingate, Grand Street, and Curtis will compete in dual meets.  

Moreover, the finals of the inaugural Grapple at the Garden middle school championship, produced in association with the Metropolitan Wrestling Association, will take place prior to the high school matches.  For all middle school wrestlers interested in registering to compete, please visit on or after October 1. Valid tournament registration includes two tickets to all Grapple at the Garden festivities. All competitors must have a current USA Wrestling card.

The full day of wrestling on December 1 will include two dual meet sessions with the first starting at 10:00 a.m. with Maryland vs. Cornell, Rutgers vs. George Mason, Illinois vs. Bloomsburg, Hofstra vs. Army, Boston U. vs. Penn, Drexel vs. Princeton, and Stony Brook vs. West Chester CC.  Session two will begin at 12:00 p.m. and will feature Cornell vs. Illinois, Rutgers vs. Maryland, Princeton vs. Army, Bloomsburg vs. Penn, George Mason vs. Drexel, Hofstra vs. Boston U, and NYU vs. Stevens., the world renowned wrestling gear supplier, has once again signed on as presenting partner of the premier Grapple at the Garden wrestling event.

Collegiate wrestling debuted at Madison Square Garden on December 16, 2012 with the inaugural Grapple at the Garden which featured 14 teams; six No. 1 ranked NCAA wrestlers; five returning National Champions and six of the top 10 teams in the country.  You can now relive the historic event through INSIDE TRIP: GRAPPLE AT THE GARDEN.  This special 30 minute DVD is now on sale via for $24.95, which includes an official event program from the live event.  INSIDE TRIP is your exclusive all-access, behind-the-scenes pass to this historic first-ever event. See the big names that attended the event, hear from some of the greatest past and present wrestlers of all-time, and watch the greatest sport take place at The World’s Most Famous Arena with INSIDE TRIP: GRAPPLE AT THE GARDEN.

INSIDE TRIP: GRAPPLE AT THE GARDEN was produced by X-CEL Worldwide in association with MSG Sports. 


Army Head Coach, Joe Heskett:
"Last year the Garden hosted one of the greatest collegiate events I have ever seen outside of the NCAA Championships. Our team is excited to compete and to win at MSG. This season's Grapple at the Garden will be another outstanding day of collegiate wrestling in the world’s greatest city." 

Bloomsburg Interim Head Coach, Danny Song:
“After falling to then #7 Missouri in last year’s inaugural event, Bloomsburg is hungry to get back to the Garden. We look forward to competing with a very high-level opponent in Illinois, and also renewing our rivalry with Penn.  The Garden is among the world’s most famous venues, and has proven to be ideal for an American wrestling showcase.”

Boston University Head Coach, Carl Adams:
“The Boston University wrestling team is looking forward to the competition at the Garden. We feel very fortunate to be able to face two very tough teams in Hofstra and Penn. Competing at the Garden amongst some of the elite wrestling programs in the country will be exciting, and it provides us an opportunity to showcase what the Boston University wrestling program is all about.”

Cornell Head Coach, Rob Koll:
"It was an incredible experience for our Cornell wrestlers to compete in the world’s most iconic arena in front of our NYC fans and alumni.   The fans, wrestlers and I had a chance to be a part of history and for that, I am extremely grateful."

Drexel Head Coach, Matt Azevedo: 
"Drexel University Wrestling is thrilled to be a part of the Grapple at the Garden once again this year.  We have a lot of alumni that live and work in the NYC area.  This will be a great opportunity for them to see our student-athletes compete in 'The World's Most Famous Arena' against two outstanding universities in Princeton and George Mason."

George Mason Head Coach, Joe Russell:
“We were able to participate in the Grapple at the Garden last year.  Everyone on the team spoke of the event as a highlight of their season.  I am elated to have the team compete at the event again on December 1, 2013.  We will come prepared to put on an exciting show for the wrestling fans in New York City.  Go Patriots.”

Hofstra Head Coach, Rob Anspach:
"Last year was a great event and we were honored that we were a part of the first Grapple at the Garden.  The team was able to wrestle in front of 10,000 people which was amazing and something they will remember for the rest of their lives.  We look forward to being a part of many future events at Madison Square Garden."

University of Illinois Head Coach, Jim Heffernan:
"We are very fortunate to have the chance to participate in the Grapple at the Garden event.  It will be a tremendous opportunity for our student-athletes to compete at Madison Square Garden, one of the greatest sport venues in the world.  The environment and level of competition will certainly play a role in preparing us for the post season, and will be great exposure for our program.  It is an honor for Illinois Wrestling to be chosen to showcase our great sport in New York City at this unique event." 

University of Illinois Associate Head Coach, Mark Perry:
"This event truly is something our athletes and coaching staff will remember for many years to come.  It is an honor to come into the Garden, and put on a great show for all the wrestling fans."  

Maryland Head Coach, Kerry McCoy:
“I am very excited to return to the Grapple at the Garden.  Last year’s event was so awesome; everyone connected with our program could not wait to get back.  This year will be another exciting event and we look forward to participating again in what is quickly becoming one of our sports premiere marquee events.  Special thanks to everyone who made it possible.”

NYU Head Coach: Bruce Haberli
“It is an honor to have been invited to participate in the Grapple at the Garden event.  Not only is it a great opportunity for our NYU wrestlers to compete against one of our biggest rivals, but it is also a special privilege to do so at one of America’s greatest and most storied venues, Madison Square Garden, right here in NYU’s own back yard!  My wrestlers and I look forward to adding to the excitement and energy of this incredible wrestling event.”   

Penn Head Coach, Rob Eiter:
“This event is a great opportunity for Penn and we are excited to participate in the Grapple at the Garden. Madison Square Garden is known as ‘The World's Most Famous Arena’, and it will be an amazing experience for our team to be a part of this unique atmosphere. We have a very strong alumni base in New York City, and I know they will be excited to support Penn wrestling in a venue like MSG."

Princeton Head Coach, Christopher Ayres:
"To be included in such a fabulous event in such a historic athletic venue is an exciting opportunity for our program and athletes.  We look forward to competing against and alongside some of the best programs in the country as we showcase the greatest sport in world in the greatest city in the world!!!"

Rutgers Head Coach, Scott Goodale:
"Rutgers University is very excited to be back wrestling in the Garden! The inaugural Grapple at the Garden event was a great experience last year. Our student-athletes loved the competition, our fans enjoyed the atmosphere and the event was perfect. Wrestling at MSG!!"

Stevens Head Coach, Mike Clayton:
"Our program is excited to be a part in such an exciting event.  Madison Square Garden is one of the top performance venues in the world, and being part of the first Division III college wrestling match in the venue is truly an honor for Stevens Wrestling!"

Stony Brook Head Coach, Shaun Lally:
“Stony Brook University, our wrestlers and I are extremely thankful and appreciative of this amazing opportunity.  Representing the University and the NCWA at the ‘World’s Most Famous Arena’ is just incredible.  I have been to Madison Square Garden for countless Big East games, Rangers vs. Islanders games, Knicks games and much more.  To be on this hallowed floor with this team in front of Stony Brook fans and all wrestling fans is a dream come true.  This event and venue creates winners out of our teams, fans, schools and most of all our beautiful sport, wrestling!”  

Westchester Community College Head Coach, Joe Regan:
“As we continue to grow wrestling at Westchester, competing in Grapple at the Garden is a huge step for our program. We are honored to be part of such a unique event in The World’s Most famous Arena. Our wrestlers will have the experience of a lifetime, competing on the big stage in front of their family, friends, and fans.” 

About The Madison Square Garden Company
The Madison Square Garden Company is a fully-integrated sports, media and entertainment business. The Company is comprised of three business segments: MSG Sports, MSG Media and MSG Entertainment, which are strategically aligned to work together to drive the Company's overall business, which is built on a foundation of iconic venues and compelling content that the company creates, produces, presents and/or distributes through its programming networks and other media assets. MSG Sports owns and operates the following sports franchises: the New York Knicks (NBA), the New York Rangers (NHL), the New York Liberty (WNBA), and the Hartford Wolf Pack (AHL). MSG Sports also features the presentation of a wide variety of live sporting events including professional boxing, college basketball, bull riding and tennis. MSG Media is a leader in production and content development for multiple distribution platforms, including content originating from the Company’s venues. MSG Media’s television networks consist of regional sports networks, MSG Network and MSG+, collectively referred to as MSG Networks; and Fuse, a national television network dedicated to music. MSG Networks also include high-definition channels, MSG HD and MSG+ HD, and Fuse includes its high-definition channel, Fuse HD. MSG Entertainment is one of the country's leaders in live entertainment. MSG Entertainment creates, produces and/or presents a variety of live productions, including the Radio City Christmas Spectacular featuring the Rockettes. MSG Entertainment also presents or hosts other live entertainment events such as concerts, family shows and special events in the Company’s diverse collection of venues. These venues consist of Madison Square Garden, The Theater at Madison Square Garden, Radio City Music Hall, the Beacon Theatre, the Forum in Inglewood, CA, The Chicago Theatre, and the Wang Theatre in Boston, MA. More information is available at