NY Inspector General report should have you concerned about the commission

July 26, 2016

The New York Office of the Inspector General released a scathing and concerning report on the state agency that regulates boxing and that will soon oversee MMA.  The report identifies the practical, logistical and ethical mistakes made with respect to the November 2, 2013 fight between heavyweight boxer Magomed Abdusalamov and Ismaikel Perez at Madison Square Garden.

The fight left Abdusalamov fighting for his life as he suffered a stroke and remains in need of 24 hour care.  His family has sued the New York State Athletic Commission.

The New York Office of the Inspector General released a critical and concerning report on the state agency that regulates boxing and that will soon oversee MMA.  The report identifies the practical, logistical and ethical mistakes made with respect to the November 2, 2013 fight between heavyweight boxer Magomed Abdusalamov and Ismaikel Perez at Madison Square Garden.

The fight left Abdusalamov fighting for his life as he suffered a stroke and remains in need of 24 hour care.  His family has sued the New York State Athletic Commission.

The report highlights that the New York Inspector General received information that Melvin Lathan, the Athletic Commission chair at the time received improper gifts from promoters.  In addition, the current Athletic Commission Chair Thomas Hoover also engage in improper conduct in obtaining benefits for a relative and friends.  On Monday, Hoover offered his resignation and it was accepted.

Notwithstanding these ethical problems, the Inspector General also concluded that many of the commission’s practices, policies and procedures “were either nonexistent or deficient, specifically those relating to post-bout medical care, tactical emergency plans and communication and training.”

Noteworthy is that the staff on hand on the night of the fight did not have a plan in the case of a medical emergency.  This resulted in Abdusalamov being told to take a taxi to a hospital despite the fact that there were ambulances at the venue.  Also, it was discovered that the commission did not provide Abdusalamov or his team with the proper language services as required.

These and other missteps were identified in a 48-page report obtained by the New York Times.

Several recommendations were suggested in the report which the commission has agreed to adopt.

Payout Perspective:

According to the New York Athletic Commission web site, Ndidi Massay is the Interim Chair.  The disarray within the commission should concern those awaiting the first UFC event in the state this November.  Despite the celebration of the legalization of the sport this spring, the report should give some concern over the oversight that the commission will give to MMA events.  While there is still time to rectify the situation, the resignation of Hoover on Monday leaves the commission searching for a permanent replacement.

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