Havana's Kid Chocolate auditorium, a spacious wood-floored gymnasium named after the great Cuban boxing champion of the Thirties, seemed the perfect place, in 1991, to debut a new sport. There in the central Havana auditorium, on the second floor of a building across the street from the historic ornate capitol building, Manuel "Manolo" Lopez and a small band of renegade athletes staged what they believed was Cuba's first public kickboxing exhibition. They didn't see the show as an act of insurrection, but the Cuban government apparently did. Lopez's group was never allowed to return to Kid Chocolate. The members continued their kickboxing training and competitions, though, moving from gym to gym as authorities booted them out of various public places. Within four years most of the team was in exile and one... More >>>
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Civil engineer and kickboxer Guillermo Fernandez did prison time in Cuba for "terrorist activities"