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Hawaii and Indiana Become Latest States to Regulate MMA

BJ PennHawaii and Indiana have both begun to regulate mixed martial arts this week, boosting the number of states which officially sanction the sport to 39.

Pennsylvania also began regulating MMA in recent months, with Pittsburgh’s first event taking place last weekend and the UFC’s “Keystone State” debut slated for August 8 with UFC 101 in Philadelphia.

One of the last major holdouts on the list of 11 states which have yet to legalize the sport is New York. Though a bill to regulate MMA is making progress in the state’s legislature, it won’t be until next year at the earliest until it could be approved with the first UFC event in the state unlikely until 2011.

A UFC event in Indianapolis, Indiana appears most-likely with the new regulation now in place, with an event in Hawaii, the home state of UFC lightweight champ BJ Penn, likely on hold for the time being due to steep taxes and fees that accompany the state’s regulation.

Un-sanctioned MMA events have been frequently held in both Indiana and Hawaii in the past, but the official regulation of MMA opens the doors for major promotions such as the UFC and Strikeforce to hold events in the states.

[Pictured: BJ Penn]

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