Senator urges Assembly Speaker Silver to "Bring it to the floor!"
State Sen. Mark Grisanti, R-I-60, is the co-sponsor of S.2755, which would allow professional mixed martial arts events to be held within New York state. On Wednesday, he voted "yes," and the bill passed the Senate by a margin of 47 to 15.
MMA is legal in 47 states and has a huge following based on attendance and pay-per-view sales alone.
The success of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, the premier MMA league, has brought economic benefits to cities around the country and the globe.
An exhibition in Toronto last spring set a record of $11 million in ticket sales with more than 50,000 tickets sold. The total impact from weigh-in on Friday until the end of events on Sunday was $35 million.
An independent study done a couple of years ago indicated that Buffalo could reap almost $5 million from one exhibition.
MMA has become a part of mainstream sports. It is one of the fastest growing sports in the world. Grisanti said that, if violence and the risk of serious injury is a reason the ban is still in effect, activities such as boxing, football, ice hockey, downhill skiing, rodeo and even tightrope walking across Niagara Falls should be banned, too.New York bans professional fights, but allows MMA gyms, amateur fights and other types of martial arts, such as judo and tae kwon do.