Sam Caplan at FiveOuncesofPain says an anonymous source let the cat out of the bag regarding the big-time UFC announcement that we’ve been frothing about for the last couple of days. Here’s the story, as he hears it:
[T]he committee for Tourism, Arts, and Sports Development of New York recently held a vote on Wednesday to decide whether the state should regulate Mixed Martial Arts…According to the source, the bill was voted down in overwhelming fashion…
This web site has also learned that the possible legalization of Mixed Martial Arts in the state of New York was the planned announcement that UFC president Dana White had hinted at during an interview that was published on ESPN.com last week.
According to a source, White was confident that the vote was going to pass and believed he had assurances that the proposed bill would be approved by the committee for Tourism, Arts, and Sports Development of New York. However, the proposal was unexpectedly voted down for reasons that are not yet clear. In a strange turn of events, it is believed that the chair of the committee, Assemblyman Steve Englebright, who introduced the proposal, ended up voting against it…
The bill was not passed in large part because of opposition from both sides. However, according to our source, a republican committee member “picked up the bill” and applied pressure after the session to have the vote passed. In another unusual development, several committee members, primarily republican but also a few democrat, attempted to change their vote.
Because of the attempt to change votes, it was decided that the bill will be placed on the agenda again early next week…As it stands, it’s still possible that White will be able to make his huge announcement as planned on Tuesday as there has been a major swing in support for the bill.
Wait a minute, the guy who introduced the bill voted against it? And you’re sure his name wasn’t Assemblyman Daniel O. Miragliotta? (The “O” stands for “Oops!”) And what’s up with the committee members who tried to change their votes after it was put back into play by that heroic Republican committee member? We can only hope the label of “waffler” follows them their entire political careers.
Until it’s coming out of Dana White’s mouth, we’re still going to label this “unconfirmed.” Even if MMA legalization in New York State was the major development that White was going to announce, the bill hasn’t passed yet, so the planned announcement could theoretically turn out to be an embarrassing public failure. And also, look at the language White originally used:
You have no idea some of the stuff that we have planned. I’m going to make an announcement next week that is going to blow people’s minds. That deal is done, but my employees don’t even know yet.
Well, MMA regulation in New York wasn’t a done deal, and we’d actually been expecting it since the UFC launched MMAFacts.com. Making MMA legal in New York would be awesome, but would it really be that mind-blowing?
You’ll know more when we do…