Bucky Gleason's Power Take: Olympics should make room for MMA - The Buffalo News
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Bucky Gleason's Power Take: Olympics should make room for MMA

The International Olympic Committee for decades has taken pride in its ability to celebrate history and keep up with the times. Decisions are made in the spirit of competition while expanding interest and thinking about generations ahead.

Track and field has around since the beginning while beach volleyball was added in 1996 and surfing in 2016. Alpine skiing has been a mainstay since the Winter Games began in 1924 while snowboarding and moguls skiing came along in recent years.

With that in mind, the IOC should consider adding mixed-martial arts to its Olympic lineup no later than 2024. It's likely too late for implementation in the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo.

MMA is viewed as a progressive sport of a younger generation, but actually it's made up of various Olympic sports that have been in place for years. The 2016 Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro included boxing, judo, taekwondo and wrestling. MMA combines all four, and more, into one combat sport.

The Ultimate Fighting Championship, which oversees MMA at the highest level, turned the sport into a sustainable international phenomenon. If freestyle skiing can join the Olympics, mixed-martial arts is a no-brainer.

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