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Does MMA have a future in Ontario?
Wed, February 17, 2010


TORONTO -- Premier Dalton McGuinty has dealt a stunning blow in the Ultimate Fighting Championship's battle to come to Ontario.

"It's just not a priority for us," McGuinty said Wednesday. "We have other things on the go right now and we'll stay focused on those."

The premier's comments indicate that despite the incredible popularity of mixed martial arts in this province, Ontarians will have to continue to travel to Quebec or elsewhere if they want to see a live match.

The federal Criminal Code prohibits prizefighting but individual provinces can choose to exempt sports such as boxing and mixed martial arts.

According to a consumer services ministry spokesperson, Ontario would need to be convinced the UFC is safe for the public and participants before it would make amendments to the Athletics Control Act.

What's your take on this latest development? Have your say in our forum.

McGuinty bodyslams UFC


This comment is FULLY MODERATED.


here is just a bit more for you to look at as well.

This is a 2008 study.

"During the 635 professional MMA matches, 300 of the 1,270 athletes sustained documented injuries with an injury rate of 23.6 per 100 fight participations. Most common reported injuries were lacerations and upper extremity injuries. Severe concussion rate was 15.4 per 1,000 athlete exposures, or 3% of all matches. No deaths or critical sports-related injuries resulted from any of the regulated matches during the study period. Age, weight, and fight experience did not statistically increase the likelihood of injuries after controlling for other covariates."

The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine Department of Emergency Medicine recently published a report of a five year study of injuries sustained during sanctioned mixed martial arts competition that took place in Nevada. The conclusion: the overall risk of critical sports-related injury appears low.

I also wanted to make another comment on the street thugs and gang phrase you used before as well.

I was in MOntreal for the first UFC held there. It was a great time and there was no trouble at all with the spectators at the event.. Can you say the same when Montreal lost their game a little while later? The streets were turned into a pure state of anarchy. Police cars were over turned and burned, stores were looted, fights broke out everywhere.

Check it out before you pass judgement on fighters and their fans..

Sure we have our share of "Those fans" but so does every sport.. Look at soccer hooligans..Thee is some distaste for a sport in every person, but that does not mean a sport is any less entertaining to those that like it.

BY your saying that MMA is not a real sport, targets all combat sports.. It makes them all void. You take boxing, wrestling Pro/am, Thai Boxing, and many other martial arts. Does a sport have to be non-violent for it to be a sport? So then..Poker could be an Olympic sport? It takes skill, style and a lot of practice to play. There has never been a fight or a death due to a game.

If we could settle all our world trouble in the cage instead of on the battle field, we may have more of our brave troops alive and home where they should be instead of in the ground.

If we could fight all battles in the Octagon instead of tanks, we would be better off.
kellyd, 2010-02-19 09:51:18

Everyone loves the HST, no one wants the UFC?

Dalton Dalton Dalton...we're not as stupid as we think you are.
Stevie Harper, 2010-02-19 08:42:09

And just to keep in mind as well.


Contact vs. Non-contact:

• There are 4 times as many reported injuries in contact versus non-contact leagues

• The body check is one of the most commonly reported causes of both soft tissue and severe

trauma injures (42%), followed by contact with a hockey stick (16%)

• A study on youth hockey players (9-15 yrs) showed that body checking accounted for 86% of

game-time injuries, 23% of these were head or neck injuries

• Another study, comparing pee-wee level leagues (12-13 yrs), found that players in the league

that allowed body checking had a fracture rate 12 times higher than the players in the league

without body checking.

• Ice hockey is classified as a

“collision sport” by the American

Academy of Pediatrics. Because collisions may occur at high speeds, participants are at risk for serious injury.

• In measures of injury severity, ice hockey ranked 4th for frequency of


• A 1999 study of head injuries treated in the emergency room found that 18% of sport-related injuries occurred while playing hockey, while 1 in 5 of these (21%) were head injuries.
kellyd, 2010-02-19 08:36:35

So Karl.. What you are saying then is that all the High school math and chem teachers, law enforcement officers, CPA's and such that fight ion the UFC or fight in other MMA areans are members of gangs or are street thugs? Or those that delve into the realm of MMA are those such people as well? Hmm.. I would like to see that proof. Since many have come from such prior professions as I have listed. I'd like to know where you get your information. I have 2 college diplomas, teach martial arts, work for the Government and have done much searching on such things as injuries in MMA against other sports.

And yes, I hate to busrt your self impossed bubble but hockey does have more injuries for a sport that is light contact. Many of them more brutal than MMA.

MMA allows a larger variation of ways to end a fight than does most other combat sports. I have yet to see a good MMA fighter in a sanctioned league die. Yes, injuires do occur as they do in any sport.. It's part of the nature of the game.

I have had more injuires playing rugdy than I ever received in MMA or any other martial art I have taken or taught. And since I have been in the martial arts for more than 36 yrs, I think I can speak with some strong understanding of the relation between injuries in MMA and other some other sports.

And if hockey is not violent Why do teams hire "Goons" to play for them? Why does the NHL have it's "Rule 56". In 1922, the NHL introduced Rule 56 which formally regulated fighting, or "fisticuffs" as it was called in the official NHL rulebook. Rather than ejecting players from the game, as was the practice in amateur and collegiate hockey, And from that came "Rule 47". In the current NHL rulebook, the archaic reference to 'fisticuffs' has been removed; fighting is now governed under Rule 47 in the NHL rulebook. Referees are given considerable latitude in determining what exactly constitutes a fight and what penalties are applicable to the participants. Significant modifications from the original rule involve penalties which can be assessed to a fight participant deemed to have instigated the fight and additional penalties resulting from instigating a fight while wearing a face-shield.

The NHL as the UFC have rules regarding a fight. So if it is ok for them to allow fights and have them controled with rules, why is it not ok to showcase MMA events? If we can teach it, why not allow it to host here. Why did they ban kick boxing but they still allow boxing events to be held here. Prize fights don't need to be for cash. That is a mistake people make.

I also don't see too many UFC / MMA fighters needing to get a Titanium plate put into their face on a permanent basis as did Todd Fedoruk of the Philadelphia Flyers due to a fight with Derek Boogaard.

So if injury is your main call to ban this sport.. Start looking at other sports as well.

And what about Roy's golie son who skated down the ice to the other golie and then pounded the poor kid into nothing even when the other golie didn't fight back. And this was at Roy's calling.. He encouraged it to happen.

And in a study from the John's Hopkins - • There have been no MMA deaths in the

United States.

• The knockout (KO) rate in MMA appears to

be lower than the KO rate of boxing matches.

Result Number (%)

Technical Knockout 68 (39.8)

Tap Out 52 (30.4)

Decision 31 (18.1)

Knockout 11 (6.4)

Choke 4 (2.3)

Disqualification 3 (1.8)

Draw 2 (1.2)

Whereas 42% of injuries that occur in Hockey are head trauma.

27% Upper Body and 31% Lower body.

And remember.. A TKO in MMA can be from a cut above the eyes, one not being able to continue due to poor conditioning, the ref stops it as soon as the person looks like they can't defend. I have yet to see an MMA ref have his throat split open during a fight unlike a couple of the poor golies in the HNL from a skate to the throat.

AS for getting hit in the head in the NHL.. Who said you have to be hit by another person.. How many people have fallen after being hit and slammed into the boards. Don't tell me none of them. How many have fallen and broken their bones in their necks after being hit from behind. How many hockey players have been told they have had to many head injuries and one more may end their playing days..More than in MMA my friend. So before you go saying that hockey is a real sport and MMA is not. Let's remember that combat sprots were around a lot longer than hockey, foorball, baseball and many, many others. And they will continue to be around for the years to come.

Is not boxing older than baseball. What about wrestling? Let's look at the traditional Olympics in Greece.. Did they have hockey and baseball and snowboarding??? HMMM not that we have ever seen written.. Did they have wrestling, catch fighting, shootfighting, boxing?? I do believe so.

So as for MMA not being a real sport, afraid so bud.. More real than most and not ashamed of it one bit. I have never had a broken bone or a concusion in 36+ years of being in the martial arts. So I think I am a bit ahead of you in the injury free dept when it comes to sport on sport bro. And mine is full contact.

If you see it on You Tube.. You must have been looking for it.. Or did it just poo up on your computer screen and say "HEY KARL!!!!!!!!!! Watch this MMA video!!!!

I don't think so.. If you don't like it, don't watch it, simple as that.

I have also seen it during hockey games, where a player gets injured, goes back to the dressing room, gets stitched up and is sent back to play.. IN MMA, if it is that bad and the bleeding can't be stopped, he is not allowed to continue. Hockey encourages you to go on.

I have nothing against hockey players. They are indeed a tought breed. But hey, let other sports showcase their talents sometime as well.

Adn with Judo and TKD in the Olympics.. Do you really think that MMA wont get it at some point? There was a time they said Judo and Tae Kwon Do didn't belong in the Olympics either..Nor did wrestling.. But they are there and they stay strong.
Kellyd, 2010-02-19 08:19:53

Give them bread and Circus bring them death and they will love it call it what you want it's still BLOOD sport long live Empire.
One more stop to COLISEUM., 2010-02-18 12:41:46

Barbaric is what MMA/UFC is. People learn martial arts, for exercise, confidence and in womens case self defence. To promote UFC/MMA is wrong. We have enough violence in this world as it is we don't need to bring barbaric entertainment to Canada. To reference hockey or football and use these as excuses to allow UFC is wrong and bordering on idiotic. Neither sport even comes close to the stupidity behind MMA/UFC. Hockey and Football are real sports and they are not violent as UFC is. I played competitive hockey for +20 years and I have never broken a bone or had a hit to the head. UFC or MMA will never be in the Olympics. People may get hit in the head in hockey but most every time the player is penalized for x amount of games and financially. I was appalled to even see UFC on TV. Go watch Youtube videos, watch how they fight and people end up in hospital with broken bones, concussions and other moderately severe injuries. It wouldn't surprise me that half the people in UFC are nothing but street thugs or gang members. UFC/MMA should not only be resisted in Canada but Cable companies should remove channels that show it freely.
Karl, 2010-02-18 12:36:31

I'd like to see what the reasoning is as well.

I have been in the martial arts since 1973 and followed the UFC since 1993.

I have not seen one indication of a death due to a fight in any sanctioned UFC event.

With the ability to knock out or tap out your opponent, it becomes much safer.

Leg kicks, joint locks, laying on them in the mount position to gain points, take downs. All these things add more ability to win than just punching in the head or body blows.

There is a huge amount of revenue to be made from a sport like this here in Ontario.

I believe NYC said they stand to make around $6 million a fight in profit with people attending events.

It also makes no sense that we can teach these kind of arts in Ontario but we are not allowed to Showcase them.

WWE wrestling is a more dangerous sport by far and is still a prize fight. We allow it here.

How many UFC fighters have ever taken a chair to the head during a match?

We allow Tae Kwon Do to hold events in Ontario and they have some of the strongest legs in the game. And the entire purpose when striking is to cause a "Trembling Shock" to the body. Ever been kickd by a high ranking TKD practitioner? I have and it isn't a great feeling.

And in a sense, are not all sports "Prize Fights"?

Fight for the ball, fight for the puck, fight for the best position, fight for a place on the top team. If you compete in any sport, you are fighting to win that prize of first place, the money or the recognition and ability to move on to higher ground.

If you are so worried about how barbaric fighting is and the fact that it is a prize fight, then don't watch.

I have seen more hockey players hurt and suffer long term effect than any fighter to date. That include Ali. He has Parkinsons and it has not been linked to his fighting at all. I have yet to see one thing prove it 100% that it is from him fighting.

Besides.. Look at fighters like Randy Couture. He is in his late 40's and still one of the best fighters around and he still has all his mental abilities.

I dare you to go and tell him he is out of itand then get on the mat with him.

Tom. Learn more about the sport. It's really not that bad.

Most that bad mouth it are ignorant of it. Don't be one of them.

kellyd, 2010-02-18 11:03:55

It makes no sense in Ontario that we can teach MMA, but not be able to hold events. They even banned Kick Boxing years back for the same reasons.

I have been involved in martial arts since 1973 and have been watching the UFC itself since 1993.

I have yet to hear of a death in a legitimate / sanctioned fight.

There are fighters in the UFC and MMA in general now, that are older than many hockey players and they are still able to fight and have their full mental abilities still with them.

How man hockey players have been told over the years " One more hit to the head and you will have to drink you food thru a straw."?

MMA is less barbaric than many think.

Instead of beating a guy into submission or knocking him out (as in Boxing), you have the ability to use joint locks, chokes, leg kicks, simply lay on him in the mount position and gain points, knock outs and many other ways.

The revenue to make is incredible. From the arena holding the fight to the hotels, restaurants and bars.

go check out alocal bar one night showing the fight and see the crowds..

I have been a doorman for 26 yrs and any bar I have worked in that showed the fights has had very little trouble from patrons while watching.

combative sports are the oldest form of sport entertainment around. They have been around since before hockey, baseball, football and most others. ( Besides hunting and fishing).

These are adults that are aware of what they are getting into and they sign into it freely and willingly. Would you like it if someone called your sport "idiotic, Useless, pathetic", just because they didn't like it?

I doubt it.

Before you go on and judge the sport, learn about it and see the records.

There has never been a death in the UFC and a good portion of money ( NYC said it stands to make about 6Mill a fight in profit for the city). I am sure Ontario could use it.

So what is the real reason they wont allow it?

Are not most sports a prize fight. Just with other rules and styles. Fight for the ball. Fight for the puck, fight for position.

Wrestling is a prize fight and we allow the WWE here in Ontario. Sure it say "Sports Entertainment" But the wrestlers still fight and do more things to each other than do MMA fighters.. When was the last time you saw GSP, Matt Serra or BJ Penn take a chari to the head or jump off a ladder to a poor shlump passed out on the mat?

We have everything to gain from allowing the UFC and MMA here.

Why not give it a chance to have 1 show here and then decide.

Give it a chance as most other places have.

What's the worst that could happen? The hosting city makes tons of cash??? OOOOOHHHHHHHHH shame on them..

Get with the times boys. It a sport that is growing by leaps and bounds and it's is something that is practiced world wide. As are regular martial arts. We should allow them to showcase their skills and abilities as we would any other sport.. Those that don't understand it or are ignorant and wont take time to research it are the ones that scream loud about not allowing it here.

Until you know everything there is to know about it, sit down - shut up and let the adults talk it out.

In the spirit of Budo.

Renshi Kelly D.
KellyD, 2010-02-18 09:51:50

Tom, Boxing is eminately more violent than MMA. In boxing if an opponent is knocked down due to primarily head shots, the ref does an eight count and the brain jaring pummeling is allowed to continue, increasing the risk of head injury.

In MMA if an opponent is knocked down and looks to be in trouble the referrees stop the fight out of concern of more injury. The only difference between the "sweet science" and MMA is that the fighters can utilize more parts of their body. We already sanction full contact Karate so why are you so opposed to adding a similar sport? Please enlighten me. Ward.
Ward, 2010-02-18 09:36:23

I love the comments about this making money. Like MMA can produce something usable.

It transfers money from your pocket to someone elses. You pay and someone else from another place takes your money away.

I'm not against having it but it is kind of boring, I'll stick to hockey.
Trev, 2010-02-17 20:26:47

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