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Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Mma Show Shut Down In Boston

MMA Show Shut Down in Boston
By Derek Callahan

Around 1:00 this afternoon, the East Coast Fighting Alliance (ECFA) made the decision to move their show, "The Colosseum," to the Roseland Ballroom in Taunton, Massachusetts. Promoted by active fighters and trainers Mike Littlefield and Mike Varner, the show is set to kick off at 8:30 on Saturday, June 4th. Doors open at 6:30.

Originally scheduled to take place at the Roxy Nightclub in Boston, the show was put in jeopardy last Friday when Patricia Malone, the director of the city’s Office of Consumer Affairs and Licensing, refused to give the show a permit to hold the fights.

"Any time that an event is put on, whether it be MMA, boxing [or] a basket weaving expo, they have to apply for a special event permit," said ECFA spokesman Rick Caldwell.

The issue lies in that the Massachusetts Boxing Commission has regulated the sport in the past, and has done so for several shows in Boston.

"I’m not sure why they chose this show to make an example of," said Caldwell. "Everything we’ve done in Massachusetts has been by the book."

Although shows have been held in Boston before with little objection from the city, this new problem lies in that Malone, who signs off for permits, is not keen to do so for MMA events. According to Caldwell, this is beyond her jurisdiction because of the Boxing Commission’s authority.

"It isn’t her place to decide what goes on with MMA," he said. "They have people that do that."

The next step for the ECFA will be to find out what they can legally do to hold Boston shows in the future. For now though, they vow to put on an exciting show Saturday night, and grapple with the legal troubles later.

"We made a promise to the fans and fighters that we’re gonna put on a show," said Caldwell. "We’re making sure that the people come in and get their money’s worth."

A three-day venue change is a daunting task, with everything from seating charts to ticket sales going haywire. After this show though, steps will be taken to figure out the proper way to getting MMA back into Boston.

"We do have lawyers looking into it. We’re gonna try to do it right, research it and see what the best way is to go about it," said Caldwell.

posted by Full Contact Fighter @ 8:00 pm
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