UFC 249 And Upcoming Events Postponed
UFC 249 and all upcoming UFC events have been postponed. While the whole world of sport has come to a complete standstill as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, UFC president Dana White has pushed on and done everything possible to continue with the shows.
However, the UFC boss has had to finally accept defeat. For the time being at least. Speaking to ESPN, Dana said that he had been told by the ‘powers that be’ at ESPN and Disney to postpone their upcoming events. Including the much talked about UFC 249.
“Today, we got a call from the highest level you can go at Disney, and the highest level at ESPN … and the powers that be there asked me to stand down and not do this event on Saturday,” Dana said.
We reported a few days ago that UFC 249 and the following three cards were to take place at Tachi Palace in California. Dana confirmed that this was the case and promised that the UFC’s next event in California will go down there, to thank them for all their support in recent weeks.
Throughout this whole process, most fighters have said they wanted to fight. With many of them needing to fight to feed their families. Dana confirmed that everyone will be looked after during this testing time.
“All of my fighters that are under contract with me, I want them to feel safe, take time with your families, and enjoy this time. Don’t worry about the financial part of this. You’re gonna get the fights in your contract, and I’m gonna make things right with the people who were willing to step up and fight next weekend on April 18th.
“And I’m gonna take care of as many people as I possibly can, and do whatever it takes to make these guys all feel comfortable.”
Despite the setback, Dana promised to be back soon, on his ‘Fight Island’.
“It’s all good. We’re going to get through this. We’ll be the first ones back. Fight Island is coming, all the good stuff. It’s coming, man. We’ll get this thing squared away, get a date from ESPN, and we’ll be back first and we’ll get these fights going that everybody wants to see.”
The New York Times has since reported that California Governor Gavin Newsom called Disney himself to express his concerns with UFC 249 going ahead.
In the last few minutes, ESPN has released an official statement on the cancellation of UFC 249:
“ESPN has been in constant contact with the UFC regarding UFC 249. Nobody wants to see sports return more than we do, but we didn’t feel this was the right time for a variety of reasons. ESPN expressed its concerns to the UFC and they understood.”
You can see how Tony Ferguson reacted to the news here:
And check out how the rest of the MMA world reacted here: