MMA fans plan T.O. rally

ANTONELLA ARTUSO, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:17 AM ET

Mixed martial arts fans are planning a rally at Queen's Park in a bid to "educate" the provincial government about the popular sport.

Sunday shopping gradually fell by the wayside as people's view of the world changed, and so should bans against MMA, the rally organizer says.

Gerald Chopik, president of Mixed Martial Arts Expo, said the May 22 event will raise awareness about the sport, bringing together individuals and businesses that see it as a great benefit to the province.

"Is it really such a brutal and ridiculous thing to consider or, in fact when you get the facts together, is this really a logical progression because individually all of the sports which make up mixed martial arts are already sanctioned?" Chopik said.

Premier Dalton McGuinty has said that bringing MMA to Ontario is not a priority for him.

Without the government's sanction, organizers cannot legally set up professional matches in Ontario.

A lobbyist is registered on behalf of the Ultimate Fighting Championship to communicate with the premier's office and the ministry of consumer services to bring about changes to Ontario Athletic Commission regulations that would allow MMA events in the province.

Organizers say the 1-4 p.m. MMA Day event will feature "Showdown Joe" Ferraro, an MMA analyst; Carlos Newton, the first Canadian UFC champion; Mark Hominick, a professional MMA fighter; Sam Stout, a Canadian UFC lightweight contender; and others involved in MMA.


Videos

Photos