UFC take drastic measures due to Corona virus – Events to proceed without fans
The Corona virus is now officially a global pandemic, and the deadly virus is now starting to take it’s toll on upcoming UFC events.
Yesterday it was announced that this weekend’s UFC Brasilia will go down without any fans in the arena. This was done due to the mayor of Brasilia issuing a ban on all mass events. There have been strong concerns regarding the upcoming schedule for the UFC, and if events will be cancelled all together. As of now, no UFC events will be cancelled due to Corona virus scares, but two upcoming events will be moved to the UFC Apex Center, and proceed behind closed doors. Next weekend’s UFC Lonon is however, scheduled to continue as planned.
The UFC relayed this information via a press release.
“UFC Fight Night: Ngannou vs. Rozenstruik, originally scheduled for Saturday, March 28, at Nationwide Arena, in Columbus, Ohio, will be relocated following the State of Ohio’s ban on large gatherings of 100 or more. In addition, UFC Fight Night: Overeem vs. Harris, originally scheduled for Saturday, April 11 at Moda Center in Portland, Oregon, will be relocated following the State of Oregon’s ban on large public gatherings of 250 or more. These events will now take place in UFC APEX in Las Vegas on the same dates, Saturday, March 28, and Saturday, April 11, respectively. Both events will proceed with only essential personnel in attendance and without spectators. UFC is working directly with Nevada State Athletic Commission Executive Director Bob Bennett on implementing a process to screen the competing athletes for the coronavirus to ensure their health and safety. These events are scheduled to be broadcast live on ESPN’s platforms here in the U.S., and by UFC’s media partners around the world.”
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In an appearance on Sports Center, UFC president Dana White explained that the UFC were willing to keep their record clean in regards to athlete safety.
“We always go overboard. In the over 25 years the UFC has been around, there has never been a death or serious injury in the UFC,” White said. “Think about that. Think about our sport … you know why? Because we always go overboard with health and safety, and that’s what I’m going to do here.”
White added that the UFC are trying ti remain calm and collected amidst the panic that has stricken much of the world.
“Everybody is panicking,” White said on SportsCenter. “Instead of panicking, we’re actually getting out there and working with doctors and health officials and the government to figure out how we keep the sport safe and how we can continue with our events.”
If all proceeds as planned, MMAnytt is scheduled to attend UFC London. While there are critics, it seems that the UFC are doing their best to keep their events schedule running, despite the spread of the Corona virus, with as few alterations as possible.