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Celebrity eBay auctions launched to aid Olympic wrestling

Jul 13, 2013, 8:56 AM EST

Kurt Angle AP

A walk-on role on “Boardwalk Empire,” meeting Jay Leno and Mario Lopez and a training session with Randy Couture are some of the items up for bid to benefit wrestling’s hope to remain in the Olympics.

Actor and wrestling advocate Billy Baldwin and the Committee for the Preservation of Olympic Wrestling (CPOW) launched the first of three auctions through eBay on Friday.

On Feb. 12, the International Olympic Committee voted to recommend wrestling be dropped from the Olympic program starting in 2020. In September, the IOC will choose one of wrestling, baseball/softball and squash to add for the 2020 and 2024 Olympics.

Wrestling has been a part of the Olympics at every Games in the modern era dating to the first in 1896 in Athens except in 1904.

Seven items are currently up for bid, including a one-hour training session with mixed martial arts star Couture, meeting Leno at “The Tonight Show,” meeting Lopez at “Extra,” a backstage experience with pro wrestlers Hulk Hogan and 1996 Olympic champion Kurt Angle and a rendezvous with ESPN’s Mike Golic.

Items scheduled to go up for bid later include a VIP ticket package for the Rio 2016 Olympics, a walk-on role on “Boardwalk Empire” and lunch with actor Tom Arnold.

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