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Hippies Rejoice: Vermont Becomes 46th State to Regulate Mixed Martial Arts

“Whoooooaaaa…says here this thing is a ‘Rousimar Palhares‘. We’re already legally dead.” 

Yesterday, while you were making terrible Star Wars jokes and/or mourning the death of MCA, lawmakers in “The Green Mountain State” were busy passing a bill to regulate the sport of mixed martial arts. Vermont is now the 46th state in the United States to regulate our sport.

My initial reaction to this news was probably the same as yours: Vermont isn’t exactly the biggest state in the union, but it’s always great to see a state start regulating MMA. Our second reactions were probably also pretty similiar: Damn, New York. You let the state known for its organic-granola crunching, Birkenstock wearing hippies regulate MMA before you did. Get your shit together. For real this time.

Granted, everything I know about Vermont I’ve learned from pints of Ben & Jerry’s. So let’s read the press release that the UFC issued:

“Vermont’s legislation of the sport of MMA is further evidence of the continued growth and success of our sport in this country,” said UFC Chairman and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta. “We are pleased that fans in Vermont will now have the opportunity to watch a live UFC event in their own backyard, and look forward to making that happen.”

You have to appreciate the optimism, but where exactly will a live UFC event be held in the state of Vermont? Vermont’s most prestigious professional sports team is a Single A baseball team called the Vermont Lake Monsters. Vermont’s biggest stadium, Centennial Field, holds 5,000 people. It’s largest indoor arena, Gutterson Fieldhouse, barely holds 4,000 people. Even the smallest, least interesting UFC cards should expect more than 4,000 people.

I’m personally thinking that Bellator is far more likely to visit Vermont before the UFC does, but I’ve been wrong before.

Of the 48 states with the necessary regulatory bodies to oversee mixed martial arts (I’m not surprised, Alaska and Montana, but I am still very disappointed), only New York and Connecticut do not currently regulate MMA. You’re back on the clock, New York. Try not to screw up this time.

Related: Wyoming to Create First Ever MMA-Only Commission Starting July 1st.

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truthjusticeUSAway- May 7, 2012 at 5:18 am
As a former Vermont resident, I had the same reaction to this. MMA has already been going on in Vermont since 2007-2008, both pro and amateur. Outside of the tiny indoor arenas we have in Vermont, there is also an outdoor grandstand that might fit another thousand people or so, but still definitely nothing near UFC-grade. The UFC will continue going to Montreal and Boston and Vermonters will have to be happy with road trips until VT makes itself a better hose to large events.
linzhanbt- May 6, 2012 at 2:40 pm .. . . . .. . .
Fried Taco- May 5, 2012 at 11:37 am
I'm rooting for Connecticut! Then the UFC could hold an event in that one city.