MMA Legalization in Toronto

Where hasn’t the sport of MMA ventured to?

They have been to many states, countries, and providences putting on shows for thousands of fans. Yet one location they haven’t been featured is the providence Ontario. Ontario and preferably the capital and city of Toronto are trying to get the legalization of MMA to pass through the local governments.  However, up to this point, government officials have not passed any legislations regarding MMA.

When The UFC broke into the country of Canada they achieved record sellouts as well as gate numbers that far exceeded any of the company’s predictions. Montreal has seen record numbers in ticket sales as well as gate numbers for the fight cards. Unfortunately, Ontario still hasn’t budged with their stance on MMA and according to Commissioner Ken Hayashi it will not happen because of the Canadian Criminal Code 83. 

Criminal Code 83 is as followed:
Everyone who
(a) engages a principal in a prize fight,
(b) advises, encourages or promotes a prize fight, or
(c) is present at prize fight as an aid, second, surgeon, umpire backer or reporter is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction

So what this code is saying that MMA isn’t allowed because of the money involved with the gaining’s of not only the fighters but the UFC as a company. Toronto doesn’t approve of paid fights of any kind (besides boxing). In addition to the criminal cod,  Ontario is one of a few providences that doesn’t have an athletic commission to regulate the sport. It’s a time tough time to live in Toronto while being an MMA fan but Dana White is still resilient and for a good reason.

Dana White has publicly stated that if Ontario approves MMA in their criminal codes and brings The UFC to Toronto that he will shatter ticket sales as well as put on an event that many individuals have been waiting on for a very long time.

The UFC has also branched out their offices from Las Vegas and opened a Canadian office in Toronto to not only push the legalization of MMA but to expand their horizons to many more followers of the sport.  Toronto is a tough place to gain MMA but they have one of the best fan bases there is for MMA and there is strong hope it could happen in the next few months.

The big issue is the criminal code and how it could be reworded for MMA in order for it to be legally held in an arena. As with many areas that weren’t legally sanctioned for MMA fighting it takes time as well as the constant visiting and “pitching” their thoughts and ideas. The wheels are slowly turning for Toronto and hopefully in the next few months we will hear this great city hosting a UFC event in the very near future.

Filed under: MMA, UFC, WEC

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