Ontario Athletic Commission hurting MMA

UFC 165, featuring a main event of Jon Jones versus Alexander Gustafsson, takes place on Saturday,...

UFC 165, featuring a main event of Jon Jones versus Alexander Gustafsson, takes place on Saturday, despite a lot of the restrictions and impediments the Ontario Athletic Commission throws up when major fighting events are staged in the province. (Jack Boland/Toronto Sun)

Steve Buffery, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 1:02 AM ET

TORONTO - When the Ontario government legalized professional mixed martial arts in 2011, many boxing promoters were terrified that the arrival of MMA would deliver a knockout punch to boxing.

After all, with the success of the UFC, mixed martial arts was booming — Ontario already had some of the largest pay-per-view UFC audiences in the world — while boxing, the venerable sweet science, seemed to be disappearing from the landscape in parts of North America, certainly in Ontario.

Unlike the UFC, which is guided by the charismatic Dana White, boxing was falling off the map, the result of too many dreadful shows and promoters who didn’t seem to know how to promote the sport. Many of Ontario’s best professional boxers were forced to go elsewhere to ply their trade.


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