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BC Medical Body Calling for National Ban of MMA in Canada

(Funny, these quacks aren’t calling for a ban on hockey.)

When a syndicated story run in the majority of Canada’s  newspapers begins with "Ladies and gentlemen; boys and girls; children of all ages! In this corner, weighing in at a staggering mass of popularity, we have the blood sport known as mixed-martial arts!"

Pause for applause.

"And, in our other corner, sporting a stethoscope and look of genuine consternation, we have . . . Canadian doctors!" it usually isn’t a positive story for the sport of MMA.

A story appearing in several major Canadian newspapers today reports that
the organization that represents doctors in British Columbia is urging its counterparts from across the country to call on the federal government to impose a national ban on mixed martial arts.

According to the report, the B.C. Medical Association held a caucus meeting and passed a resolution stating it wants the full-contact sport banned in Canada last month and now the body, which acts as the voice of doctors in B.C. is planning to bring that resolution to the Canadian Medical Association’s annual general meeting at Niagara Falls, Ont., from Aug. 23 to 25.

If the national group votes in favor of adopting the resolution, it will lobby the federal government to work with the provinces to bring an end to MMA contests in the country.

"We know there are a number of serious injuries that can occur, including broken limbs, lacerations and brain damage," said Dr. Ian Gillespie, president of the B.C. organization.

Apparently Gillespie doesn’t drive a car, ride a bike or walk down the street in the presence of traffic, since each of these activities carry similar inherent risks.

"Recently, an MMA fighter making his professional debut in South Carolina died from a brain hemorrhage after receiving repeated blows to his head, and during an event in Vancouver, a number of MMA fighters received emergency care at Vancouver General Hospital for lacerations, fractured limbs and severe facial bruising," he pointed out, ignoring the fact that people have died from injuries sustained while golfing, bowling and cheerleading in the past.

"A lot of people are convinced that our sport is actually more violent and that there are more traumatic head injuries than in sports like boxing or football," said Tom Wright, director of operations at the Canadian arm of Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Citing a 2006 Johns Hopkins University study which found that the overall rate of injury in MMA is no worse than other combat sports, including boxing and that the mortality rate is much less, Wright pointed out that MMA knockout rates are lower than in boxing, which suggests a reduced rate of traumatic brain injury in MMA compared to other combat sports.

Gillespie said his group is taking the close-minded position that MMA fights are more dangerous than boxing because of fewer safety rules.

"It’s our understanding what distinguishes mixed martial arts fighting from boxing, for instance, is the use of various techniques to disable the opponent that aren’t limited to punching and the fewer of what might be called safety rules. For example, MMA allows a fighter to attack an opponent while down and we believe those things increase the risk of serious injury," said Gillespie.

Taking issue with the broad brush Gillespie’s group has painted MMA with, Wright said UFC would be interested in talking with the B.C. doctors about their resolution "to provide our perspective, to provide our data, to provide our facts so that individuals are making informed decisions," rather than incorrectly calling it a dangerous, unsafe bloodsport like many uninformed people including the reporter who penned the article refer to MMA as.

Wright also added that the commission that regulated the South Carolina event that the fighter fought in who died as a result of injuries that may have been pre-existing does not require the same medical testing that UFC does, such as an MRI test.

The UFC has been lauded in recent years for bringing in in more safety regulations for MMA, such as weight classes as well as properly trained medical staff and officials, and Wright says that that the sport needs to be regulated to their standard to ensure the highest level of safety for athletes.

So agreed Dr. Samuel Gutman, founder of Vancouver’s Rock Doc Consulting and an ER physician at Lions Gate Hospital, who’s treated MMA athletes as a ringside doctor and other combative sports for the past seven years.

"What’s really needed is a provincial governing body that will protect the fighter," said B.C. ER doctor Dr. Samuel Gutman who has worked as a ringside physician at several MMA events in the province. "The fact is (the sport) is not going away and it’s being practised in less than a safe manner in some cases, like many other things. Activities, when they’re regulated, they become safer because there’s standards."

"[The UFC is] the pinnacle," Gutman said. "Do people say that the NFL is wrong because there’s players injured on a significant basis when they play at that level, and similarly the NHL? This is the top league in the world for this sport, and so people get hurt."

Currently only Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan, Newfoundland and Labrador, Yukon and Nunavut have provincewide bans on the contests, but the majority don’t have provincial athletic commissions who could sanction the sport while New Brunswick has a ban on MMA fighting outside of the city of Moncton where regulation is done by a city-run commission.

Cagepotato Comments

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Joedirt- August 14, 2010 at 1:31 pm
didn't anyone read todays paper?!? MMA to be allowed in Ontario... UFC event expected in Toronto in 2011.... guess not all Canadians are fukt.
Mr_Misanthropy- August 14, 2010 at 1:24 pm
@ TL416

Lay off the sauce, Susie. That jackass stole those elections and this frozen expanse of foundering tundra is cruising quickly in the same direction. The funny thing is all the idiots like you already saw it happen once, right in front of your faces. Now denial and your false feelings of superiority are forcing you to turn a blind eye to your own looming real estate disaster and crumbling economy, as a useless jackass wastes your resources and destroys your government. And the taxes keep going up. Come check in with me in about 3-5 years and let's have this conversation again.
TL416- August 14, 2010 at 7:55 am
I do agree that these BC doctors are being pussies.
Generalizing Canadians for this is just retarded.
You guys elected a monkey for 8 years. A complete fucking idiot ran your country of like 350 million people for 8 YEARS! Now you're stuck with incredible debt and everyone hating you (China? All those "brown" countries?) Oh, AND like 40% of your population genuinely thinks an Alaskan soccer mom (also a complete bonehead, definitely thought about poking her a couple times though) is the best option for your next president.
Don't call us retarded, we just have a fucked up government and have way too many unions which cause this kind of shit. HURRAH CAPITALISM ON THE EAST COAST! It's these damn BCers.. Gotta love their weed but their unions are a bitch. I acknowledge the majority of generalizations I made are from people in the southern states. I ask you acknowledge it's not our country thats retarded, it's the pussy unions.
Once you make a union, you can't take it away because all the pussies in that union are pussies and can't handle it on their own.
ccman- August 14, 2010 at 7:06 am
Sorry get off me "french pussies"

Chicks are always welcome.... except canadian dr chicks who ban mma
NukeBlast- August 14, 2010 at 5:35 am
@Get of me

National hockey league isnt the place to see fights. There's minor local leagues all over the place which features fights a lot. For instance a good player will be paid 200$ for a game....and 1000$ for each fight. Fighter in those leagues know each others and this is quite structured...each of them will fight once or twice in each game. Referee will let them go until someone fall or get knocked out.
Mr_Misanthropy- August 14, 2010 at 3:58 am
I think you guys are the only moderate Canadians I've met in the last five years... I keep running into Ian Gillespies everywhere and it has been giving me a bad reaction. I've been trying my best to restrain myself from going rogue, like when an old elephant gets pissed off at the circus and decides to take shit into its own hands (trunk?).

Did I mention fuck the HST in the goat ass?
Get Off Me- August 13, 2010 at 11:09 pm
Keep the french pussy out...have you seen the french pussy we got? It's waving at you when you go to those real gentlemens clubs in Quebec...America, especially Vermont and North Dakota would be best to start letting that french pussy influence in if they want to work on the looks of their women...everytime I hit up Sugarbush it's like spotting Yeti's all over the place.
Dr.- August 13, 2010 at 11:02 pm
Alright, I'm on my way to shit bomb Dickhead Gillespie's house.

With a name like Gillespie, I wouldn't expect anything less. All the other BC potatoes, let's get on this.
Dr.- August 13, 2010 at 10:57 pm
Fuck off. I'm so pissed right now. Bunch of bloody retards.
steampunk22- August 13, 2010 at 10:51 pm

We spell it "eh" not "aye".

ccman- August 13, 2010 at 8:23 pm
The only reason we allow canada to exist is so we can
A. Give north dakota a place to make fun of the accents from.
B. Keep the french pussy influence out.
C. Have All nude strip clubs with liquor.

Thank you for hockey, keep curling, and fuck off aye.
Ballkick- August 13, 2010 at 8:13 pm
Ok,....hold the fucking phone!
As I read all the well worded, perfectly sensible opposition to this rash and senseless piece of excrement proposed by the B.C. Medical Association. I am laughing my head off.
Come on people do you really think that this Bullshit stands a snowballs chance in hell of ever becoming anything more than a topic for the B.C. Medical Association to legitimize the very reason for it's excessive salaries and it's very existence to the rest of the countries Provincial Medical Associations?
If there is one thing that I learned growing up in B.C. is that B.C'ers absolutely LOVE unnecessary government red tape and rules and regulations on every facet of peoples lives. Even better if they can add a tax in there somehow.

It wouldn't surprise me if someone directly or indirectly responsible for this ass-hattery is bucking for election for some government position.
I for one don't think this will ever get more than unenthusiastic golf-claps from the (anxiously awaiting to stop all this talky talky shit,....and get to playing a round of golf on the local high priced exclusive Country Club nearest them) Canadian Medical Association.

In closing I would just like to add.........FUCK YOU! B.C. Medical Association, you've rationalized your existence, shut up and go play golf with all your pretentious friends.
BeastUnleashed- August 13, 2010 at 7:54 pm
No wonder Brock hated the Canadian health care system. They are fucking ignorant as shit.
KillDozer- August 13, 2010 at 7:50 pm
they shouldn't just hold caucus, they should jerk it too
KillDozer- August 13, 2010 at 7:47 pm
fuck that, Canada is gay, especially those B.S. cumguzzlers who love to hold cockus
Joedirt- August 13, 2010 at 7:25 pm
I'm totally gonna get trashed here.... but here goes... they are right about one thing, needing a provincial governing body... THERE I SAID IT. I am against the ban let's make that clear. But I think the US needs something similar. A lot of fights and fighters are happening off record, fudged fighter stats, mismatches etc. A proper amateur governing body would help ensure everyones safety. The UFC is the premier promotion and does it right... the problem is all the small org's or events that have nobody making sure they cover all the bases and even though a good number do exercise due diligence many do not... and it only takes those few to ruin it.
Silva fan999k- August 13, 2010 at 7:06 pm
The canadian doctors should try to do their regular job properly before going for politics and law...<

their emergency is a mess and you wait a years for an hearth surgery!
But they have the time to look at MMA to ban it...

mmacanada- August 13, 2010 at 6:50 pm
This is really sad. As a person who has seen thousands of fights in his life, I've personally never watched someone die in this sport. But in my rugby, football, hockey and baseball days, I have witnessed first hand a teenager die in rugby, a college football player break his spine in 3 places, a hockey player take a laceration to a major artery under his arm pit, and a pitcher in baseball break his arm in half, only being held on by the skin. I haven't seen anything remotely close to that in my mma watching days. This day, I am not proud to be Canadian, that's for sure.
serendipity- August 13, 2010 at 6:06 pm
Ya, but Lesnar totally deserved it ... and this is different. This could impact the future of mma.
NinjaNerd8- August 13, 2010 at 6:05 pm
Lol @ the only sensible, non-troll comments coming from Canadians.
Get Off Me- August 13, 2010 at 5:34 pm
10 fights per game?!? I wish, the habs didn't even have ten fights total last year.
Healthcare here is not free, don't sell yourself short as a hard working Canadian.
Healthcare is organized in Canada and we pay through our taxes collectively.
steampunk22- August 13, 2010 at 5:32 pm
Really quite embarrassed about this, considering I live in BC.

This sort of opposition is completely ridiculous. Even if their perception of the sport was accurate (which it is obviously not) its still the fighters choice to engage in the sport and accept the potential risk.

You're telling me I can play hockey and football still? And boxing is fine? And I can still buy cigarettes? And liquor? And enough meds to kill my brain a thousand times over? And I can still skydive in BC? And luge? And learn to fly a plane? And scuba dive?

But I can't fight? Thats too risky?

Get bent.
steampunk22- August 13, 2010 at 5:26 pm

Tito Ortiz's wife can't go one day without holding a large "caucus" either. Although presumably its not Tito's.
CAP10- August 13, 2010 at 4:55 pm
First they almost killed Lesnar... now this?!?!
NukeBlast- August 13, 2010 at 4:53 pm
There's one thing in healthcare.

I can understand that MMA fighters needs healthcare and this is being paid by the society. But it's also true for boxing and especially hockey. We have hockey leagues in Canada which is basically boxing without gloves....there's like 10 fights each games and no one is bitching about these.