Surprise! MMA in New York Still Hasn’t Happened Yet

Fightland Blog

By Josh Rosenblatt

Image via Flickr user Nau Nau

See, here’s where you messed up: You cared.

If you were smart you would have shut your heart down long ago and not gotten your hopes up about MMA coming to New York. Anyone with even a drop of psychological or religious wisdom could have told you that the key to approximating happiness and contentment in this world is detachment and indifference, that caring is the surest path to misery. But you went and did it anyway: You cared. And that’s where you screwed up.

I should stop. I’m being cynical. The prospects for MMA in New York are by no means dead. Most likely they’ve just been delayed again, probably into early next week, after state legislators have worked their way through a debate about rent regulations (which were set to expire this week and which legislators agreed yesterday to extend for five days as a stop-gap). According to our sources in Albany, the chances of MMA passing through the legislature this year are still good, but nobody knows how or when. Technically the legislative session ended Wednesday, but it was extended to accommodate a couple of lingering issues, MMA among them. Discussion on the floor of the Assembly and a vote could come at any moment—today, tonight, next week—or it could not come at all. Some rumors have the MMA bill hitting the floor today, others on Tuesday. We won’t know until it happens, or until the gavel drops on the 2015 session without so much as a word of explanation. This is your democracy in action, America. But hope springs eternal, and as long as the Assembly is in session there’s hope.

Still, it’s hard not to feel cynical. After nearly 20 years of living in the dark ages in what is supposed to be one of the most progressive states in the country, and after six years of seeing our hopes of an MMA-sanctioning bill pass in the legislature dashed by politics and concerns beyond our control, we New Yorkers have been trained to expect the worst. It’s hard not to feel like we’ve been down this road before, and that it only ever leads to one place.

But no!—it’s Friday and the sun is shining and the birds are singing and the legislature is still in session and we refuse to give in to despair! Why ruin our weekends, right? Instead, to lighten the mood we will leave you with a quote from State Senator Liz Krueger of Manhattan, who, earlier this week, voted against the bill after calling mixed martial arts an “unjustifiable sporting activity” on the floor of the Senate. Enjoy, and keep your fingers crossed for more panicked, paternalistic, hand-wringing madness from your elected officials next week.

“It’s going to kill you,” Krueger said, “and it’s probably not the greatest activity for you to spend your time having fun with non-professionally and not a really great career move professionally, even if you think you’re having a good time now.”


Check out these related stories:

The Long Wait for MMA in New York Continues

MMA on the Verge of Making it in New York (Maybe)

New York Legislators Scrambling to Sanction MMA by Next Week

Political "Tradition" Keeping MMA from New York