It wasn’t easy being an MMA fan in New York. For the last two decades or so, if you wanted to see live fights at a high level, you had to leave the state. You had to drive up to Boston or shoot across the river to New Jersey or schlep down the Turnpike to Philadelphia.
Being a full-fledged MMA fan living in New York required a car or a plane ticket and enough money for a hotel room, in some cases. Sure, Prudential Center in Newark is just a few stops away from Manhattan on New Jersey Transit, but you get the picture.
That is the life I led for many years as a Queens, N.Y., native. Before I was an MMA journalist, I was a fan and any time a big MMA show came to the East Coast, I jumped in a car or hopped on a train. I saved money for tickets and sometimes room and board, too.
I watched Nate Diaz beat Jim Miller and Antonio Silva stun Fedor Emeliaenko at the dilapidated IZOD Center in the shadows of the old Giants Stadium. I witnessed Frankie Edgar beat B.J. Penn (for the second time) and Randy Couture use that old low single versus James Toney at TD Garden in Boston. I saw Anderson Silva make Forrest Griffin look silly at Wachovia Center in Philadelphia, grabbing a couple of cheesesteaks along the way. I also saw a few fights in Las Vegas as fan, but you know the saying: What happens in Vegas, you’re not likely — or willing — to remember it.
For the last 20 years, if you were a New Yorker and wanted to go see a UFC event, you better be prepared for a road trip or more.
As a sports journalist at the New York Post and ….View full article
Source:: mma fighting