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Morning Report: South Dakota passes bill to regulate combat sports, MMA ban handily defeated

Score one for sanity. According to a report from, Representative Steve Hickey, who earlier this week inanely referred to mixed martial arts as the child porn of sports — and later asked the question, Who would Jesus elbow in the face? — saw his amendment to ban the sport easily defeated by the South Dakota State Legislature on Wednesday. In addition, the South Dakota House of Representatives approved a bill that would create a state commission to regulate combat sports, including boxing and MMA, by a hefty 50 to 20 vote. Fight sports were previously legal in the state of South Dakota, however the lack of a sanctioning body led to a free-for-all in regards to on-site medical personnel, pre-fight blood tests, insurance and medical suspensions. The bill was previously approved by the Senate and now only awaits the signature of Governor Dennis Daugaard. Daugaard, for some reason, strongly opposes the push for increased safety and oversight for such volatile sports. However both houses of the Legislature passed the fight commission bill with margins sufficient to override any veto. In other news, Representative Steve Hickey’s Twitter avatar is still a photoshopped image of his head superimposed on Captain America’s body, with Tommy Lee Jones stoically observing in the background. Awesome. 7 MUST-READ STORIES South Dakota bill passed. The South Dakota bill that would create a state commission to regulate combat sports, including boxing and mixed martial arts, passed through the South Dakota House of Representatives by a 50 to 20 vote, according to a report from The amendment from Representative Steve Hickey, who infamously compared MMA to child porn and sought to ban the sport, was handily rejected. Dekkers passes away. Kickboxing and Muay Thai legend Ramon Dekkers tragically passed away at the age of 43 on Wednesday. Dekkers reportedly suffered a heart attack while riding his bicycle in his home town of Breda. WSOF signs Volkmann. Former UFC lightweight Jacob Volkmann inked a multi-fight deal with World Series of Fighting. Volkmann is expected to make his promotional debut in June. Bellator 91 weigh-ins. All 18 fighters met their required weight at Wednesday’s official Bellator 91 weigh-ins, including light heavyweight champion Christian M’Pumbu and title challenger Attila Vegh. Edgar-Swanson considered for TUF Finale. UFC officials considered a featherweight tilt between top contenders Frankie Edgar and Cub Swanson to replace Demetrious Johnson vs. John Moraga as the main event of TUF 17 Finale, however Swanson felt he wasn’t healthy enough to accept the bout on five weeks notice. UFC 157 salaries, medical suspensions. Former Strikeforce champion Dan Henderson led the reported payroll at UFC 157, earning $250,000 for his decision loss to Lyoto Machida. Henderson, along with Josh Koscheck and Josh Neer, also received six-month medical suspensions from the California State Athletic Commission. Shamhalaev replaces Straus. Bellator season seven tournament winner Shahbulat Shamhalaev replaced the injured Daniel Straus against Bellator featherweight champion Pat Curran in the main event of Bellator 95. MEDIA STEW R.I.P Ramon Dekkers. 186-33-2, 95 KOs. Champion. Legend. There’s no easy transition, but I guarantee this clip of TUF 10 alum Justin Wren will put a smile on your face. Per Wren’s YouTube summary: Hairy & Scary in Congo! 1st time kids see white dude & even see arm hair! First time they see a beard… And they get to see themself doing it on the screen of the iPhone 4s front screen while they are doing it. The people talk, blah blah, blah. Maybe this time for fight. It’s good for Chris Weidman, not for me. It’s good for the boy, the kid. — Anderson Silva. Pat Barry disagrees with your assessment of Lyoto Machida vs. Dan Henderson. I see your Evil Dead reference, Tommy. Don’t you dare try to sneak that past me. R.I.P. Said day when a legend like Ramon dekkers passes. He will always be a legend and one of my idols ”” Ian McCall (@Unclecreepymma) February 27, 2013 Very sad to hear Ramon Dekkers has passed away suddenly. What a pleasure it was to watch him battle in Muay Thai. R.I.P. champ. ”” Pat Miletich (@patmiletich) February 27, 2013 Today a legend in the sport passed away! My condolances go out to his family! Thanks for al the great memory’s motivation! RIP Ramon Dekkers ”” TyroneSpong (@Tyrone_spong) February 27, 2013 So very sad to hear of the passing of an all-time legend of the ring.RIP Ramon Dekkers, always a warrior, you will never be forgotten. ”” Big John McCarthy (@JohnMcCarthyMMA) February 27, 2013 RIP. My ultimate fighting hero.”¦ ”” MarloesCoenen (@MarloesCoenen) February 27, 2013 WEIDMAN RESPONDS Anderson says I’m just a kid then he should have no problem dominating me and moving on to his next opponent, right? So what’s the problem ”” Chris Weidman (@ChrisWeidmanUFC) February 27, 2013 SOUND LOGIC I don’t get it tweeps, whys…

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