UFC Postpone Next 3 Events, Dana White says, “Khabib/Tony is on.”

Dana White’s plans of holding fights over the coming weeks were crushed on Monday when US President Donald Trump addressed the nation. Trump spoke during a press briefing with the COVID-19 task force. 

“We have an invisible enemy,” the president said at the news conference, where he released guidelines that called for people to avoid gathering in groups of more than 10 people, steer clear of eating and drinking at bars, restaurants and food courts, and work or attend school from home whenever possible. “This is a bad one. This is a very bad one.”

UFC events in the upcoming weeks were meant to take place in London, Columbus, and Portland. UFC London was moved this week due to travel restrictions but White was going ahead with a plan to hold it Stateside. Speaking on SportsCenter the UFC President stated he was ready to go this coming Saturday. 

“We were ready to go live from Fire Lake Arena, an Indian reservation in Oklahoma, on Saturday. But the President just spoke to the country. Now they’re saying no more than 10 in a room. That’s impossible. We can’t do it.”

White wrote to his staff via an email obtained by MMAJunkie on Monday morning. 

My Crew,

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.

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 shitty 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.

Thanks.

Dana

Dana White also spoke about the upcoming UFC 249 card. He also mentioned if the highly anticipated title bout between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson would happen. Listen to the full segment below where he speaks about hosting the event ‘probably not in the United States’ and how he is going to pull it off. He also touches on why he chose to push forward with these events in the midst of a global pandemic.

Ian O'Neill is a Kilkenny man living in Canada. You can catch him on Twitter most of the time talking all things MMA. Follow me on Twitter and on Instagram @ioneillmma.