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UFC announces first Toronto event in April 2011

UFC president Dana White announced that UFC 131

UFC president Dana White announced that UFC 131 will take place at the Rogers Centre in Toronto on April 30, 2011. It's the first MMA event in the Ontario province. (Dec. 7, 2010) Credit: AP

Toronto was one of the last two major markets in North America that UFC sought to get mixed martial arts legalized. (The other market, of course, is New York.) That happened a while back, and the UFC on Tuesday announced its first pay-per-view event will happen April 30, 2011.

Hosted at the Rogers Centre, home of the Toronto Blue Jays, this event will be the sixth major event in Canada. (FYI: The Blue Jays will be at Yankee Stadium that weekend.)

"This announcement has been a long time coming and we're thrilled," UFC Director of Canadian Operations Tom Wright said in a statement. "Ontario is obviously a key market as Toronto is one of 'the' MMA cities in the world. "

UFC also announced a two-day fan expo, to be hosted at Direct Energy Centre in Toronto.

No official announcements of fights on the card from the UFC yet, but some of the rumors include a Georges St-Pierre bout. That's likely predicated on how he emerges from this weekend's UFC 124 weltereweight title defense against Josh Koscheck.

“Canadians have repeatedly shown how much they love the UFC,” said UFC president Dana White. “Fans in Ontario have patiently waited and it will pay off as this one will go down in the history books come April 30. I’m very excited – Toronto is going to break the record and host the biggest mixed martial arts event ever in North America.”

New York Sports