Dana White spoke to Kevin Iole and confirmed that UFC 249 will most definitely be going ahead and fans will get to see Khabib Nurmagomedov take on Tony Ferguson in an entirely new venue. The location change is understandable as the event was originally schedule to take place in The Barclays Center in New York, until the state’s governor Andrew Cuomo announced a ban on all mass gatherings and sporting events due to the Coronavirus outbreak.
Fans were left concerned for the future of the event after the UFC decided to cancel every single fight card leading up to UFC 249 on April 18th. This was just the latest in a series of major event cancellations, including every event until May scheduled by one of the most popular competitive BJJ promotions, Fight 2 Win. It’s not just elite competitors suffering though as the IBJJF also suspended all future competitions until the world was able to recover some sense of normality after this outbreak.
With the above statement from Dana White, fans can breathe a sigh of relief that this ill-fated match will not be cancelled for a fifth consecutive time. The event will have a slightly surreal feel though as it will take place behind closed doors without any crowd, exactly like the last event to go ahead, UFC Brasilia on March 14th. For the time being, White is keeping the new venue for UFC 249 a secret and judging from the gradual response to the outbreak in America it would be a surprise if the event stayed on US soil. Given the huge Russian fanbase that Khabib Nurmagomedov brings, it’s entirely possible that the event will take place there instead.
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