What we know and don’t know about UFC 249

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The UFC is pressing forward with its UFC 249 pay-per-view match on April 18, simply because the promotion’s president Dana White had promised.

In fact, there were significant changes along the way. A extremely expected light-weight identify headliner between champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson used to be scrapped after Nurmagomedov were given stranded in his local Dagestan because of commute restrictions led to through the coronavirus pandemic. Fan favourite Justin Gaethje has taken his position on quick realize and can combat Ferguson for an intervening time belt.

The winner is predicted to stand Nurmagomedov subsequent, probably as early as August.

Former UFC ladies’s strawweight champion Rose Namajunas withdrew from her scheduled co-main event bout with Jessica Andrade for undisclosed causes, ESPN showed with resources.

In an interview with ESPN, White mentioned maintaining this match in combination amid the whole lot occurring on this planet is the toughest factor his corporate has ever performed. Here is what we find out about UFC 249, and the questions that stay.

The place will the development happen?

This one may not be at the private island White mentioned he secured to degree fights with global combatants, and it may not be in Brooklyn, as initially scheduled. The UFC isn’t disclosing the site of this match. The New York Occasions reported Tuesday, following a tweet from Sherdog founder Jeff Sherwood, that the cardboard will happen at Tachi Palace Lodge and On line casino, which is positioned on a Local American reservation in central California. The website online has a historical past of maintaining MMA occasions. Global Excessive Cagefighting (WEC) ran 22 occasions there between 2001 and 2010 sooner than being absorbed into the UFC. For the previous a number of years, the California State Athletic Fee (CSAC) has regulated occasions at Tachi Palace. However that might not be the case this time. Flights are being booked to Fresno, California, consistent with a supply, and combatants and cornermen are anticipated to reach the center of subsequent week.

Will combatants and match team of workers on the match be examined for COVID-19?

Opponents and nook other folks had been advised they are going to be examined for COVID-19 on website online, resources showed. Resources mentioned the UFC may be arranging for COVID-19 exams to be despatched to the houses of combatants and nook other folks prematurely of the cardboard. The UFC has no longer formally introduced whether or not athletes and team of workers shall be examined for COVID-19. White advised ESPN on Monday, “Pay attention, we are going to cross above and past and do the whole lot we will to verify everyone is protected.”

Will combatants be drug examined?

In an interview with ESPN, White mentioned, “It is going to be identical to a standard match, sure. There shall be drug checking out, the entire deal.” The USA Anti-Doping Company, which administers the UFC’s anti-doping program, indicated in a observation to ESPN on Wednesday that it intends to be keen on UFC 249. “With all attention to athlete protection and logistical demanding situations, we are going to do the whole lot in our energy to habits UFC match checking out,” USADA director of communications Adam Woullard mentioned. “Identical to the referees within the Octagon, our doping keep an eye on officials are an crucial a part of an even combat.”

Will combatants get medicals?

The UFC has said all athletes will go through the usual clinical analysis this is carried out previous to all sanctioned occasions.

The place and the way have combatants been coaching?

This varies. Gaethje told ESPN he is been coaching in a non-public facility with fewer than 10 other folks — 3 coaching companions, two coaches and a videographer. Ferguson has been coaching in his personal facility in California since December. Heavyweight Francis Ngannou has been figuring out at his house and sometimes with head trainer Eric Nicksick at Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas. Featherweight Jeremy Stephens has posted movies on social media operating along UFC bantamweight Dominick Cruz.

How will combatants reduce weight?

Consistent with a Yahoo Sports activities record, the UFC is operating on including a treadmill to each and every fighter’s lodge room on the undisclosed location, in addition to making transportable saunas to be had. Some athletes additionally use Epsom salt baths to chop weight, which can also be performed from a lodge room.

How do you get combatants/officers transported right through a lockdown?

White advised ESPN that transportation plans are nonetheless being put into position and would come with air commute.

Will or not it’s sanctioned? If that is so through whom?

That is these days unknown. The UFC has no longer formally disclosed the site of the bout, and subsequently, it’s unclear whose jurisdiction it falls underneath. Within the absence of an athletic fee, the UFC self-regulates and has an extended historical past of doing so across the world. In a observation to ESPN on Wednesday, the Affiliation of Boxing Commissions, which is a number of athletic commissions around the U.S., mentioned it’s keeping up a “impartial” stance at the match being staged and can recognize all bout effects as legitimate. “I’ve mentioned the topic with the ABC board of administrators, and officers from the UFC,” ABC president Brian Dunn mentioned within the observation. “They agreed to extend clinical presence and keep watch over the development through global requirements. The legitimate ABC place is impartial at the topic, as we wouldn’t have jurisdiction.”

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Max Kellerman explains why Dana White is sending a favorable message through engaging in UFC 249 at an undisclosed location and securing a non-public island for long term occasions.

Who will appoint officers equivalent to refs and judges?

If the UFC self-regulates, the promotion will make the ones choices itself. Once more, this isn’t an unusual apply in markets that lack athletic commissions. The only factor identified needless to say is that CSAC won’t keep watch over UFC 249. The fee has canceled all occasions till June 1 and in a observation wrote it “encourages the business to do the similar.” The Affiliation of Ringside Physicians wrote in a observation that it recommends “all fight carrying occasions be postponed till additional realize.” It is imaginable the UFC will rent its personal ringside physicians.

The place will combatants cross in the event that they want to be transported to the health facility?

Consistent with the record from Yahoo Sports activities, there shall be a Degree 1 trauma middle to be had on combat evening for athletes who require clinical consideration.

Who shall be allowed within the enviornment?

In his interview with ESPN, White referenced the UFC Battle Night time match on March 14 in Brasilia, Brazil: That match came about in an empty enviornment with not more than 50 other folks within the development at any time. White mentioned positive measures would as soon as once more be taken to stay the choice of other folks within the development low, even though he didn’t cross into specifics. “A large number of issues shall be other,” White mentioned. “My team of workers to cornermen to members of the family that cross to the occasions, the listing is going on and on.” There shall be 3 other folks allowed to the paintings the corners of combatants, as standard.

Will media be provide?

White mentioned make a choice media shall be licensed to wait the development in some capability. Main points relating to fighter get entry to and interviews have no longer been disclosed.

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