UFC sues New York attorney general

source: blogs.wsj.com

It’s called mixed martial arts for a reason.

The Ultimate Fighting Championship, the sport’s largest promoter, is suing to overturn New York’s ban on live bouts, saying the 1997 law runs roughshod over its freedom of expression, a novel argument that likens MMA to live ballet, music or theater.

Zuffa LLC, which owns the UFC, filed a lawsuit Tuesday in U.S. district court against New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. seeking a declaration that the ban violates the First Amendment.

Spokesmen for Schneiderman and Vance declined to comment.

The company was joined in the lawsuit by fans of the sport and a group of mixed martial arts fighters — Jon “Bones” Jones, Gina “Conviction” Carano, Frankie “The Answer” Edgar, Matt Hamill (also known as “The Hammer”) and Brian Stann (“All American”)  – who “have suffered, and will continue to suffer, irreparable harm” under the ban.

“Live professional MMA is clearly intended and understood as public entertainment and, as such, is expressive activity protected by the First Amendment,” the lawsuit said.

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Recent Comments »

Jaybrone site profile image  

11/16/11 12:52 AM by Jaybrone

 The reason NY has refused to allow MMA especially the UFC is not because is purely political. It is purely because Frank and Lorenzo are non union employers. The unions are extremely powerfull in the city and state of NY.  And since Frank and Lorenzo are non union people the unions will do everything they can to keep them from making money.

Steve4192 site profile image  

11/15/11 11:47 PM by Steve4192

If, by some miracle Zuffa actually wins this lawsuit, the New York legislature will have to mind their P's & Q's about how they oversee the sport. If they come out and start charging outrageous taxes on MMA that are completely out of line with their taxes for other forms of entertainment, they will find themselves right back in court. And the courts would be none too pleased if they discover that New York simply replaced the overt ban with a covert one.

siouxNYC site profile image  

11/15/11 10:43 PM by siouxNYC


Armbar-B-Cutie site profile image  

11/15/11 10:18 PM by Armbar-B-Cutie


419 site profile image  

11/15/11 10:17 PM by 419

One purpose of this lawsuit might be to galvanize public opinion in favor of legalizing MMA in New York (although I'm sure the lawyers would prefer to win a-fees from the 1983 action). The Brandeis brief reads like a press release.

eltigre site profile image  

11/15/11 10:14 PM by eltigre

wow that is quite a lawsuit. First time I've ever read anything like it, and I have to admit that it is pretty compelling. It's even simple enough for a layperson to understand.

mrantistupiditay site profile image  

11/15/11 10:05 PM by mrantistupiditay

<blockquote>GladiatorGannon - <blockquote>SOO72 - LMFAO at these Zuffa lawyers.</blockquote><br /><br />It's really not that funny or farfetched....strip clubs have won similar cases against cities/states that didn't want to allow them to operate, and if a strip club can do it, I'm sure a major player like Zuffa might be able to make it work.</blockquote><br /><br />Gannon, I'll bet you $1000 they don't win this case, if it's even heard.

mrantistupiditay site profile image  

11/15/11 10:05 PM by mrantistupiditay

^ not shittalking. If you're down, give me a contact and we'll work out details.

MMAxNate site profile image  

11/15/11 10:03 PM by MMAxNate

"By any means necessary."You do what you have to. If this is the way this problem is solved, so be it. Al Capone wasn't taken down on racketeering, trafficking, or murder. He was taken down with tax evasion.New York will not be without live MMA forever. If this attempt at removing the ban fails, there will be another lawsuit, and another, and another. Until the people are free to express themselves with out prejudice.

warheart209 site profile image  

11/15/11 10:03 PM by warheart209

I remember reading an article on sherdog awhile back saying one of the guys who sits on the board that judges to legalize mma in NY is pissed off at the fertittas because of a Casino deal and is cockblocking them on legalizing ufc in NY for it.