Lorenzo Fertitta file photo | Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com


Ultimate Fighting Championship officials on Thursday held a press conference at Madison Square Garden in New York City to both reiterate the promotion’s commitment to legalizing MMA and to release the findings of a study detailing the economic impact of bringing the sport to the Empire State.

“Fans in New York have to travel to outside states [to attend UFC events]. When they do that, they’re spending tourism dollars that impact those local economies,” said UFC Co-Owner and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta, who attended the conference along with company president Dana White. “We have cities bidding for our event. This sport is now global. It’s time to hold events in New York.”

According to the study conducted by HR&A Advisors, Fertitta said, holding two UFC events in New York would generate $16 million for the local economy. Events run by smaller promotions would inject an additional $7 million of revenue into the state, bringing the total to $23 million, the study found.

“We prepared an economic study, and we made conservative assumptions for economic projections in New York. We assumed that the UFC would hold one event at Madison Square Garden and one event in upstate New York,” said HR&A partner Jamie Springer.

Springer went on to predict that smaller organizations would combine for roughly 70 MMA events, selling 2,000 tickets per show on average, which would make up the other $7 million per year.

Madison Square Garden Sports President Scott O'Neil asserted that as soon as the sport became legal, the UFC would be welcome at the Garden.

“We are thrilled that Dana and the UFC are so committed to New York,” O’Neil said. “UFC and its passionate fans have a home here at Madison Square Garden, and we look forward to welcoming them as soon as the sport is regulated in New York. We have no doubt that UFC would be enormously popular at the Garden and a great addition to our lineup of world class sports and entertainment events.”

UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar, a native of nearby New Jersey, was also in attendance. The champ expressed his desire to fight in the world’s most famous arena.

“I can’t wait until I get to fight here. I’ve always been a New York sports fan. Being from New Jersey, I always wanted to fight at the Garden. Fighting in Jersey is great, but there is nothing like fighting here,” said Edgar. “There is nothing like a live UFC event. Being a guy who gets to [fight in the UFC], you would think that I’d get numb to it, but I always get the chills. I think the people of New York would appreciate having [MMA] here.” For several years, the UFC has lobbied the New York legislature to regulate the sport. Asked if he was frustrated with the drawn-out process, White pointed to the promotion’s track record of helping to get MMA legalized in similar situations.

“To be honest, I’m not frustrated. I’m a little baffled. It’s an education process. I feel we have a good team here in New York and we’re going to get this thing done,” said White. “The process is the same everywhere we go. Our job is to educate these guys on who [the fighters] really are and what this sport is. We got Ontario done, and I’m confident we’ll get New York done, too.”

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.
From Around the Web

Related News

Video: 'UFC 189 World Championship Tour' press conference in Toronto

  • 3 days ago
  • 13 views

TORONTO – The “UFC 189 World Championship Tour” made a pit stop in Canada today for a press conference with UFC President Dana White and UFC 189 participants Jose Aldo, Conor McGregor, Robbie Lawler read news >>

Dana White: UFC holding date for event at Madison Square Garden in late 2015

  • 24 days ago
  • 10 views

It might be a White Christmas in the Big Apple this year and not just because of the snow. UFC president Dana White told Inside MMA on Friday that the promotion is so confident about MMA being legali read news >>

Dana White: UFC holding 2015 date at Madison Square Garden in New York

  • 23 days ago
  • 3 views

We’ve been down this road before. But this time … maybe this time … it might happen. Filed under: Featured, News, UFC, Videos read news >>

Video: 'Confident' Dana White holding date for Madison Square Garden UFC event in 2015

  • 23 days ago
  • 1 views

"You've heard me say this many times, and I'm going to say it again: I'm very confident that it might happen this year. I'm actually really confident this year. Lorenzo (Fertitta), Lawrence Epstein, read news >>

Watch UFC 185 post-fight press conference on MMAjunkie

  • 21 days ago
  • 44 views

DALLAS – UFC 185 takes place Saturday at American Airlines Center in DALLAS. You can watch a live video stream of the post-fight news conference here on MMAjunkie at approximately 1:30 a.m. ET (10:30 read news >>

White: UFC 'holding a date' at Madison Square Garden for NY show around Christmas 2015

  • 21 days ago
  • 2 views

Rumors that the UFC may be looking for a debut event in New York late this year appear to be confirmed, as Dana White says the promotion has a date reserved in late December at MSG. While talk of a B read news >>

Live Chat: UFC 185 preview, Anthony Pettis as pay-per-view star, Mayweather vs. Pacquiao press conference and more

  • 19 days ago
  • 0 views

This is episode 129 of the Promotional Malpractice Live Chat. UFC 185: Anthony Pettis vs. Rafael dos Anjos is just days away now, so we'll go as in depth as we can breaking down this main event, who read news >>

UFC 187: Jones vs. Johnson fight card, preview, press conference, betting odds, predictions, and live update stream

  • 19 days ago
  • 6 views

Check out the full bout order and all the pre-fight hype, odds, predictions, and festivities for UFC 187: Jones vs. Johnson, which takes place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on May 23rd in Las Vegas, read news >>

Mayweather vs Pacquiao: Watch live stream online of kickoff press conference today

  • 19 days ago
  • 3 views

Time to start getting excited for Floyd Mayweather vs. Manny Pacquiao. The kickoff press conference is today at 4:30 - watch it live right here at Bloody Elbow. Not sure if you have heard this yet, b read news >>