Earlier today, UFC President Dana White told ESPN today that the company is targeting a return to hosting live events on May 9. Although he refused to reveal a location for this fight card, the UFC boss later told Variety that UFC Apex, located next door to UFC headquarters in Las Vegas, will soon be hosting combat cards.
“We built the Apex facility next door just in time to save the world from this pandemic,” White told Variety.com by email. “Live fights will be produced from there starting next month and for the foreseeable future. “
Opened in 2019, UFC Apex hosted the third season of Dana White’s Contender series, which aired live on ESPN +.
UFC officials were forced to search for alternate locations for the company’s live events due to constantly evolving health and safety guidelines issued by various state and federal governments during the COVID pandemic- 19 in progress. The state of Nevada is currently under a stay order that lasts until April 30, but Variety reports that UFC officials expect these orders to be relaxed in May. As White previously announced, however, live crowds will not be present at any live event in the coming months – and possibly longer.
The use of UFC Apex will apparently not slow the company’s search for a location in international waters, colloquially known as “Fight Island”. White told Yahoo! This facility is still under development and is also expected to open in May.
This location would allow the company to host fights between fighters from around the world who may experience problems entering the United States while travel restrictions remain in place.
“We are going to get through the American fighters pretty quickly, so we have to get up and ready to go,” White told Yahoo! Sports Kevin Kole.
The most recent UFC live event was held in Brazil on March 14. Later events planned for London, Ohio and Oregon have been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic, and the promotion initially hoped to return to action at UFC 249, scheduled to take place on Saturday. Originally scheduled for New York, UFC officials attempted to move the map to tribal lands in California, but eventually abandoned the map at the request of their broadcast partners at ESPN and Disney.
UFC officials previously announced plans to host Ohio and Oregon cards at UFC Apex, but Nevada State Athletic Commission officials imposed a card moratorium in March. fighting in the Silver State. The commission has not met since the emergency session to issue the temporary order.
White announced that a starred lineup is in preparation for May 9. Although all indications point to Florida as a potential location for the map, the UFC boss has refused to commit to a host location yet.