Khabib Nurmagomedov v Tony Ferguson is the single most cursed fight in history. After being booked and subsequently cancelled on an incredible four different occasions, things were finally looking up for the pair’s fifth scheduled bout at UFC 249. Then, the Coronavirus pandemic happened and all signs pointed to the event being cancelled yet again. With a number of BJJ promotions cancelling events and UFC Brasilia being held behind closed doors in an empty stadium, it was clear that the event was in jeopardy.
Dana White has confirmed in a letter to staff members that the next three events will all be cancelled and as a result, the next event scheduled would be UFC 249: Khabib v Ferguson on April 18th. The letter was obtained by MMA Fighting and can be read below:
This has been a crazy couple of weeks. We’ve been doing everything possible to stick to our live events schedule because the fighters want to fight, our employees want to work, and the fans want to watch our sport. So many people have reached out over the past few days to say thanks for not canceling our Brasilia event on Saturday.
When weird things happen in the world, or when there’s a tragedy, like the October 1 shooting, people want things to get back to normal, and nothing feels more normal than watching sports.
We did everything we could to relocate our next three events– London, Columbus, and Portland. But every day, there are new restrictions put in place on travel and large public gatherings that are making it impossible to stay on schedule. We can’t even hold an event in Vegas, our home town, because there’s a ban on all combat sports events in Nevada until at least March 25.
As you heard me say, I’ve been in the fight game for 20 years, and this is what we do—we find a way to keep our events going no matter what. If fighters miss weight, if fighters get hurt, or if states won’t regulate us, we figure out a way. But this is different. The whole world is being affected right now, and nothing is more important than the health and safety of you and your families.ADVERTISEMENT
That’s why we are closing all UFC offices effective immediately, including HQ in Vegas, through at least March 31st, and asking all employees to work from home. The PI will also be closed to all personnel, including athletes, during this time. The next three events– London, Columbus, and Portland—will be postponed. UFC 249 is still scheduled as planned, but the location may change. We’ll keep you posted.
I tell you guys all the time, you are the BEST TO EVER DO IT. It feels sh*tty now, but WE WILL GET THROUGH THIS, and we’ll be TOUGHER, STRONGER, AND MORE BADASS than before.Right now, the number one priority is to take care of yourselves and your family.
Finally, I want you to know that UFC has your back. If you or any member of your family is showing symptoms of coronavirus and you’re having trouble getting to a doctor, please reach out to me, Lawrence, or Hunter.
We here at Grappling Insider will update you as soon as we hear any more regarding the status of UFC 249: Khabib v Ferguson.
We were fortunate enough to get an insider’s perspective on what it’s like to be training in the midst of the Coronavirus outbreak, click here to find out more.