Since it’s that time of the year when the struggle to get the sport sanctioned in New York becomes a recurring news item, it makes sense to have a weekly update post. So here it is! This week, the big question looms: Is it going to happen this year or not?
• With time running out on the State Assembly’s legislative session, and the Assembly once again the last piece of the MMA bill puzzle, some female advocates of the sport trekked up to Albany to play some counterpoint to all the feminist anti-MMA mud being tossed about. Did it help? We’ll now soon enough. But it can’t hurt to have a Bourdain taking up the cause.
• More support for the MMA bill comes in.
• And yet, with all these voices singing the sport’s praises, one has to wonder what the real holdup is – what is it? According to Kevin Iole, it’s Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver. Last year, Assembly Speaker Silver cited a lack of support for the bill at a closed-door Democratic conference as the reason to put MMA on the backburner. Next week will see another closed-door conference. Will the Speaker once again use that as an opportunity to sink the bill?
• Last Sunday there was a pro-MMA rally on Staten Island. The good fight, it’s being fought.
• This week, Connecticut legalized MMA (well, the bill needs the Governor’s signature, but that’s expected to come), as did Canada as a whole. That makes New York the only place in all of North America where you can’t see a live pro MMA bout.