Madison Square Garden

Good news.

Despite Bob Reilly’s best efforts, it appears MMA is one step closer to being legalized in New York. The first committee to vote on the NY bill has approved it 14-6.

Mixed martial arts raised its hand Tuesday in New York, as a bill to regulate the sport in the key state passed with majority approval through the state assembly’s Committee on Tourism, Parks, Arts and Sports.

Bill 2009-B, which places the regulatory duties of the sport back in the hands of the New York State Athletic Commission, passed with a 14-6 vote. The state’s Codes Committee will now review and vote on the proposal’s legal implications. It is expected to then move right to the assembly floor for its final vote.

“It’s never gotten this far before,” said Michael Kim, a representative from the office of Assemblyman Steven Englebright, who both sponsored the bill and chaired the committee. “This is quite a first victory for the sport in the state.”

From what I gather, the bill still has to be approved by two more committees before it moves to the New York State Assembly for the general vote.

Score one for the home team.