Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Battles Unseen

Yesterday I interviewed top-level East Coast lightweight Brian McLaughlin. The scope of the interview far exceeds the constraints of this blog (i.e., it was a long interview that will find a home in next month's Full Contact Fighter magazine), suffice to say that it was all about his one-on-one session with New York State Assemblyman Bob Reilly. The same Assemblyman Reilly who's done his damnedest to keep MMA out of New York? The same Assemblyman Reilly who believes the sport promotes violence, and who believes this form of barbarism is tantamount to the decline of Western civilization? Yeah, that guy. And yesterday, McLaughlin drove up to Albany and met with Reilly, and the ROC 155-pound Beasts of the Northeast tournament winner went toe-to-toe with him and explained the ins and outs of this sport we love. How did it go? According to McLaughlin, maybe - maybe - things moved half a step forward. But regardless, McLaughlin was there, acting as a representative for those of us dying to get MMA into New York State, and from the sounds of it McLaughlin did an outstanding job. There are battles we get to see, on pay-per-view and SpikeTV and CBS and NBC, and there are battles unseen - which are sometimes more important in the grand scheme of things. Myself, I'm glad McLaughlin was there yesterday fighting this one.