ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – One day after the mixed martial arts bill passed the Assembly local fighters are already talking about it’s going to change the sport for them.
There’s a lot of excitement about what happened Tuesday, but it’s important to know the bill still has to be signed by Governor Cuomo before it can become a law.
But local fighters are already making plans for when that happens.
Matt Secor will tell you MMA saved his life.
“Brazillian ju-jitsu saved my life. I was a bad kid going in a bad way,” said Secor.
Now he trains and teaches at Spa City Jujitsu, but to participate in professional fights he has to drive at least three hours away and across state lines. Now that the bill to legalize MMA in New York is headed to the governor, he won’t have to do that anymore.
“I would love to fight in front of my hometown, which would be awesome. That would be the dream,” Secor said.
Lawmakers who voted ‘no’ on the bill say the sport is just too dangerous.
“Moving forward on this now is counterproductive to what we know and what we want to be as a state,” said Fahy.
Others say it’s the lack of regulation that was making MMA dangerous to begin with.
“What we’re trying to do is essentially take this sport out of the shadows in New York,” said Morelle.
The State Athletic Commission has 120 days after the governor signs the bill to decide all the rules and regulations.