A Walled Garden No More: After nearly 20 years of political wrangling, the New York State Assembly voted 113-25 to legalize mixed martial arts in New York, becoming the final state to do so since former Gov. George Pataki banned MMA in 1997. The decision was met with immediate rejoicing from both MMA fans, who will finally get to see MMA bouts in Madison Square Garden, and UFC, who now get to collect all the ticket and TV money from those events. “I do support mixed martial arts because it’s also an economic generator,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo told reporters Tuesday in Niagara Falls, The Associated Press reported. The only remaining hurdles are largely perfunctory: approval from the New York State Athletic Commission, and Cuomo’s pen. [The Wall Street Journal]
— Dana White (@danawhite) March 22, 2016
Plan of Attack: UFC co-owner Lorenzo Fertitta wasted no time in previewing his grand plans for their takeover of the New York audience, saying that he is planning two fight nights in New York state this year, with a total goal of landing four cards a year. “It’s going to be an epic moment for our sport and our company … when we debut at Madison Square Garden,” Fertitta said in a conference call after the decision Tuesday. [FOX Sports]
They Call It the Bosnian Block: Denver Nuggets center Jusuf Nurkić, who stands 7’0″ and 280, threw down a high-flying block on LeBron James on Tuesday night—and then followed it up with a nasty staredown of the Cleveland Cavaliers star. But King James got his revenge, later throwing down a dunk over Nurkić en route to a 124-91 victory over the Nuggets.
The Workout About…Nothing: Some boutique fitness centers are starting to offer meditation and mindfulness classes—which can definitely improve your overall fitness—that basically involve more of a mental relaxation than a physical burn. One such class: Antigravity Cocooning, a class launched at a Crunch gym in New York City. [The Wall Street Journal]
Jim Harbaugh Don’t Take No Shit: Ohio State University athletic director Gene Smith threw a little Buckeye shade at Michigan football coach Jim Harbaugh on Tuesday, saying of Michigan’s spring practices in Florida, “If we were jump-starting our program, I’d probably try that, too.” Harbaugh’s response:
Good to see Director Smith being relevant again after the tattoo fiasco. Welcome back!
— Coach Harbaugh (@CoachJim4UM) March 23, 2016