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Midnight Mania! Dana White confirms Khabib Nurmagomedov off UFC 249, promises to reveal entire card tomorrow

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UFC 249 Khabib v Ferguson: Press Conference Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC

Welcome to Midnight Mania!

The dream is over.

As recently as yesterday, hope was (barely) alive. Khabib Nurmagomedov came out with a comment about finishing up his training and still being ready to fight if the details could be figured out for UFC 249, which is now just 12 days away. However, when a fake Ariel Helwani Twitter account baited a response from Dana White, revealing that Nurmagomedov would not be competing against Tony Ferguson ... or at all.

The fake Ariel HelVani account tweeted, “#BREAKING: Dana White and Vladimir Putin have reached an agreement on travel arrangements for UFC Lightweight Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov to come to the United States. He will fight Tony Ferguson. It’s happening folks. #UFC249 will go on as scheduled April 18.”

Almost immediately, White replied to deny the news, “Absolutely NOT true!!! The card is happening but @TeamKhabib is out. I will announce the entire card tomorrow.”

Barring divine intervention, this appears to be the official and painful end to the weeks of drama regarding whether or not Tony vs. Khabib will happen. It is nice to finally know the outcome, even if it’s a disastrous one. Personally, I hope UFC takes Nurmagomedov’s suggestion to re-book the fight for August rather than force Ferguson to face another short-notice opponent or interim title fight. There are plenty of other fights champing at the bit to save the event and compete — Usman vs. Masvidal anyone? — but this fight is worth saving.

Sixth time’s the charm?

Insomnia

Jim Miller declares war on COVID-19.

Nick Newell responds to Francis Ngannou’s push up challenge ... is his lack-of-arm situation an advantage in this battle?

Nearly-nude Andrei Arlovski with a machete and war paint makes for a terrifying sight.

Speaking of naked pictures, I’ve seen TOO DAMN MANY while collecting content in the last 48 hours. I know everyone is bored, but MMA fighters need to calm down.

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These nude photo shoots are getting out of hand

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Jon Jones is practicing how to fire weapons while sober, which is seemingly a positive change from drunkenly keeping a pistol in the car.

For anyone extra bored, Michael Chiesa put out an excellent list of some of his favorite fights.

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Enjoy! @ufcfightpass

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Slips, rips, and KO clips

Wild exchanges and lunging kicks:

Reminder: Frank Shamrock’s absence in the UFC Hall Of Fame is disgraceful. Dude is a legend!

“Krazy Horse” is likely the most dangerous fighter with a sub .500 record in MMA history.

Random Land

Air Bud 5: Spikes Back.

Midnight Music: The only No. 1 hit in US history to repeat a word four times in its title.

Sleep well Maniacs! More martial arts madness is always on the way.