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Vancouver not going to become an MMA mecca anytime soon

Those looking at Vancouver as another fallen foe in the fight against anti-MMA fuddy-duddyness … look again. While the UFC has managed to twist the right arms to allow their UFC 115 event to happen, don’t expect anyone else to be able to pull the same thing off:

After UFC 115 on June 12, the thought of other organizations such as Strikeforce and Maximum Fighting Championship holding events in the Olympic city seemed like a distinct possibility. Don’t count on it, says Vancouver Athletic Commission chairman Mirko Mladenovic.

“The City of Vancouver does not want to be in the sanctioning business,” the frustrated chairman said. “After the UFC, we’re going to be at a major impasse.”

Mladenovic says the cost of holding a professional MMA event in the city is “astronomically high” because of the insurance, taxes and other requirements the city demands from promoters. The UFC, the world’s biggest MMA organization, may be in a position to meet those demands, but other promoters can’t.

And even with its huge appeal, sold-out event and dominance in the pay-per-view market, the UFC might not see much value coming back to Vancouver.

“The UFC isn’t going to make any money off this,” Mladenovic said bluntly.

UFC vice-president Marc Ratner was in Vancouver last week to nail down the final details for UFC 115 at GM Place. And while he wouldn’t criticize the city, he hinted that the sport would be better off with a provincial commission like the one in Quebec.

I really don’t get it. If the city of Vancouver doesn’t want to be in the sanctioning business, what’s the point of having the Vancouver Athletic Commission, which exists specifically so the city can SANCTION boxing, MMA, and wrestling? The whole things reeks of lazy government throwing up red tape so they don’t have to bother.