John Dodson, top, fights Demetrious Johnson during the UFC flyweight championship on FOX 6 at United Center in Chicago, Saturday, Jan. 26, 2013. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
Ceretto: Time For NYS to Enter MMA Octagon
Niagara Falls, NY (WBEN) Saying it would generate $5.2 million in economic activity a year in Western New York, a Niagara Falls assemblyman says it's time to get it on and bring mixed martial arts contests like Ultimate Fighting Championship to New York by legalizing the sport.
"It's no longer the 'no holds barred' debacle it was 20 years ago," says Assemblyman John Ceretto. "Today, MMA is highly regulated and is one of the safest contact sports, with far fewer injuries than boxing, football or gymnastics." He says opponents are misinformed about those rule changes to enhance the sport's safety.
Ceretto says MMA is already here through TV broadcasts. "The only difference is we've seen it on TV, we're following it, we're packing bars. The only thing we're missing is local revenue from live events which would bring tourists and their dollars to Western New York," explains Ceretto.
MMA events have already been held in New York, but on Sovereign land such as the Seneca Nation. Ceretto says the Seneca Niagara Casino would be an ideal place to hold events, as would a conference center in the Cataract City. "My hope and dream is in the future, there would be a complex for all sorts of events, all types of entertainment, and MMA would fit right in," says Ceretto.
Ceretto will introduce legislation in Albany today aimed at legalizing the octagon.
Assuming significant overlap between those who actually believe Limbaugh and those who like barbarians in cages, his local ratings could certainly assist any feasibility study. Incidentally did you see Doug Flutie made the NRA's enemies list?