Boxing-Related Death of UFC Vet Leads Edmonton to Ban Combat Sports

Tim Hague was a UFC veteran that died following a June 2017 boxing match in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. His death has led Edmonton to reconsider its involvement in combat sports.

There was an independent, third-party review of Hague’s death. A report about the reviews findings will be released on Dec. 14, 2017. 

The Edmonton City Council has already taken action, however, instituting a one-year moratorium on combat sports within its jurisdiction. The bylaw temporarily halting the issuance of new licenses or event permits for combat sports goes into effect on Saturday, Dec. 9, and remains in effect until Dec. 31, 2018, or until the City Council provides further direction.

This bylaw was added to Council’s agenda following a verbal, in camera update to City Council on the status of an independent, third-party review into the death of Hague, who died after a sanctioned boxing match in Edmonton on June 16, 2017. 

Tim Hague at UFC 109The moratorium bylaw was given three readings after Council passed the following motion: 

“That Administration and the Edmonton Combative Sports Commission ensure the final independent report into the events surrounding the June 16, 2017 boxing match be provided to the Hague Family and City Council and released to the public no later than December 14, 2017, and that prior to release that the City review in accordance with the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.” 

Rob Smyth, Deputy City Manager of Citizen Services at the City of Edmonton, said: “We anticipate the release of the report into the tragic death of Mr. Hague and a continued conversation about the proper role of the municipality in the field of combative sports.”

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The Edmonton Combative Sports Commission issued the following statement: “We respect the prerogative of Edmonton City Council. We will continue our work as a commission, using this time to move forward with the comprehensive policy review that had already been underway. We will work with City Administration to advise Council on a future path at the end of the moratorium.”

No further comment will be available until the scheduled release of the report on Dec. 14. 

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