(February 28, Queens, N.Y.) Last week the National Organization of Women sent New York State Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie a letter asking that he drop his support of mixed martial arts because they believe the sport is hostile to women. But 19-year-old Ozone Park resident Destiny Quinones - who became the New York Fight Exchange's female amateur MMA 115-pound champ last month - doesn't see it that way.
"I don't think it does at all," said Quinones of MMA's alleged hostility to women. Quinones was attending an amateur event tonight at York College Arena to corner a teammate. "I think it's fun."
In 2014, there were over 54 amateur MMA events throughout the state, with competitors coming from all over New York and from as far away as Florida and California to compete here. Because of the skill and tenacity she brings into the cage, Quinones is among a handful of female fighters who are beginning to be featured more prominently at fight shows.
“People don’t treat me any differently than before," Quinones said of those she interacts with within the sport. "I train with guys all the time. It’s kind of like [we’re] family. They don’t treat me any differently, they don’t beat me up, they’re pretty much very friendly with me." She adds, "I don’t have anything negative to say about MMA at all.”
Does Quinones want to see professional MMA legalized in her home state?
"Yes, I do," she said. "That will make a lot of things easier for me when I want to go professional."