(This is particularly good news for Indiana-based fighters who aren’t currently allowed to leave the state.)
The unregulated, chaotic MMA scene that produced Miguel Torres is finally getting some much-needed structure. Via MMA Junkie:
A bill that calls for the Indiana Athletic Commission (formerly the Indiana State Boxing Commission) to regulate mixed martial arts went into effect today. The state is one of 39 in the U.S. that either regulates MMA or has passed legislation that will require regulation in the coming months. Although Indiana has hosted numerous un-sanctioned MMA shows in recent years, official regulation opens the doors for organizations such as the Ultimate Fighting Championship to hit the potentially lucrative market of Indianapolis…
In previous years, MMA events have been held in Indiana with no interference from the state’s boxing commission. In essence, fighters competed with no drug testing and could bounce from the amateur and professional ranks and even compete multiple times in a short span with no overseeing body. Promoters could also skimp on medical personnel and other safety regulations at events. The anything-goes environment is the primary reason major organizations such as the UFC never previously visited the state and why politicians eventually wised up and passed legislation to regulate the sport.
Coincidentally, MMA regulation also officially began in Hawaii today, though the state demands so many fees and taxes from promoters that it’s unlikely the UFC will ever host an event there. Efforts to regulate MMA are currently taking place in Maine, South Carolina, Massachusetts, and of course, New York. For an overview of MMA regulation across the country, click here.