“I have a private island,” Dana White says UFC events will continue


The next UFC 249 event, April 18, was originally scheduled to take place in New York, but was forced to relocate due to the spread of Covid-19 and the ban on public gatherings.

After much speculation about whether the event will take place, White told TMZ Sports on Monday that it was “a day or two” from securing a private island that would host the upcoming event and the nights of following combat.

“We are in the process of setting up the infrastructure, so I will start participating in international fighting,” he said.

“I will not be able to send international fighters, all of them, to the United States, so I have a private island. I’m going to start flying them all over the private island and doing international fights from there. On April 18, the UFC was operational again. “

Although he refused to disclose the location of the island, White assured that extensive testing facilities would be in place to ensure that only “100% healthy athletes” would participate.

The island will be closed to fans – the event is broadcast exclusively on ESPN – and only a select few members of the media will be allowed.

Fighters will gather in one place before private planes transport them to the island. White said that even the combatants “will not know where they are going”.

“We’ve been working on it since the world collapsed and every day, when we were working on something, we woke up the next day and the world would change. It’s certainly the most difficult thing I’ve ever had. make. “

White’s idea comes days after one of Australia’s most popular professional sports, the National Rugby League (NRL), announced that they are considering a proposal to house all players on a luxury island in the goal of broadcasting the sport live on television as soon as possible. .

Code-named Project Apollo, players from the 16 NRL teams would be quarantined at Tangalooma Island Resort on Moreton Island, off the coast of Queensland, to be ferryed for matches in empty stadiums at broadcast worldwide.

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White between Derrick Lewis (left) and Alexander Volkov (right).

Find a replacement

The main bout in UFC 249 was supposed to see unbeaten lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov defend his title against top competitor Tony Ferguson.

But after Nurmagomedov returned home to Dagestan, Russia, White confirmed that the champion would not participate.

And although Ferguson thinks Nurmagomedov should have his title withdrawn for withdrawing from the fight, White doesn’t blame the Russian at all.

“It’s not Khabib’s fault, it’s nobody’s fault,” he told TMZ Sports. “This is something you could never prepare for, plan for or even dream that all of this is possible. “

The absence of Nurmagomedov left White looking for an opponent for Ferguson, and on Monday evening Justin Gaethje signed up to participate in the main event.

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“The fight is signed and is 100% LIVE on ESPN somewhere on EARTH !!!! White said on Twitter.

Gaethje tweeted: “I’m terrified and I love it. “


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