Despite a state-wide ban on sporting events due to covid-19, reports suggest UFC 249 will go ahead at Tachi Palace Casino Resort in California, a location on tribal land which would allow the promotion to bypass legislation.
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The land on which the casino is built belongs to the Tachi-Yokut Tribe, which also allows the UFC to bypass a ban by the California State Athletic Commission on combat sports events that will run through until May to hold the Ton Ferguson versus Justin Gathje matchup for the interim lightweight UFC title.
The Commission however, said it was sticking by measures imposed by state governor Gavin Newsom to cancel all events due to the coronavirus and confirmed its non participation in the event.
“The commission echoes the guidance of California Governor Gavin Newsom, the Department of Public Health, local health officials, and the recommendations of the Association of Ringside Physicians regarding the cancellation of events where people may be at risk of contracting Covid-19 and encourages the industry to do the same,” it said in a statement.
“The commission will not participate in the UFC event on April 18, regardless of the event location.”
On Tuesday, UFC head honcho Dana White told reporters he has “locked down” a venue for two months, meaning future UFC events are likely to b held at the venue if reports are true, and that he also has an island lined up as a location for future events.
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“I’m this close to getting a deal done, so this place where the fight’s going to be on April 18th, I have locked up for two months, so I’m going to continue to pump fights out,” he explained.
“I’ve also secured an island. I’ve got an island. The infrastructure is being built right now. We’re going to do all of our international fights on this island.”