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BUFFALO, NY- The New York State Senate has passed a bill that would legalize and regulate mixed martial arts competitions in the state.

The bill will now go to the State Assembly, where it has failed five times.

MMA proponent A.J. Verel says another version of the proposal is in the Senate and Assembly, with more protections for amateur athletes.

"There would be clear distinctions with the rules and the equipment they would use, and how you would track their progress throughout the competition," says Verel, "It would also weed out sexual predators from having any contact with children in the sport."

Verel says these regulations are not in the current bill that passed, and thinks the additional measures would make it more likely to get it by in the Assembly.

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