DESPITE trying to fight on, the UFC is now on hold.
Kingpin Dana White tried everything within his power to make sure UFC 249 went ahead during the Covid-19 pandemic, including moving the event across America after New York went into lockdown.
Ultimately though it was all in vain with Disney and ESPN putting their foot down and ensuring the event didn't go ahead as planned.
Despite the setback, White claims to have bought a private island and is ready to host MMA bouts in the near future.
When is the next UFC event?
WITH UFC 249 and UFC 250 not taking place, a new event has been pencilled in.
Although Las Vegas is on lockdown due to the ongoing pandemic, White has the UFC’s Apex centre at his disposal.
Located just off the main strip near the UFC headquarters, the studio has its own Octagon and usually hosts White’s Contender Series.
The UFC are tentatively planning to use the venue for UFC Apex, a special show featuring the two headliners from the two cancelled cards.
White revealed: "We built the APEX facility next door just in time to save the day from this pandemic.
"Live fights will be produced out of there starting next month and for the foreseeable future."
The first of these fight nights has been pencilled in for Saturday, May 9, which was originally the evening reserved for UFC 250 in Brazil.
As yet, the card is NOT signed and nothing is therefore set in stone.
Even if the fighters do agree to it, factors outside of the UFC's control could again derail the plans – something which bantamweight champion Henry Cejudo is wary about.
He told ESPN: "You can’t surprise me [with a fight] two weeks before[hand].
"I need to know today. I don’t have time to waste if this is going to happen.
"The UFC has postponed a lot of things and people spend their hard-earned money on camps, training partners, strength and conditioning coaches. "I imagine whether we fight or not the UFC will compensate a lot of guys who were under contract and had fights."
Will it include Khabib vs Ferguson?
UFC fans couldn't wait to see the lightweight title clash at UFC 249.
The two stars had been matched up FOUR times prior to that card.
But now with that fight postponed yet again, it remains to be seen just when they will meet in the Octagon.
Instead, Ferguson could face Justin Gaethje, who stepped in at the eleventh hour to try save UFC 249 when Khabib dropped out due to travel restrictions.
Here's the potential card for UFC Apex, subject to change:
- Tony Ferguson vs Justin Gaethje
- Henry Cejudo (c) vs Dominick Cruz
- Amanda Nunes (c) vs Felecia Spencer
- Francis Ngannou vs Jairzinho Rozenstruik
- Jeremy Stephens vs Calvin Kattar
- Donald Cerrone vs Anthony Pettis
- Greg Hardy vs Yorgan De Castro
- Alexei Oleinik vs Fabricio Werdum
- Carla Esparza vs Michelle Waterson
- Ronaldo Souza vs Uriah Hall
- Vicente Luque vs Niko Price
- Charles Rosa vs Bryce Mitchell
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