Earlier today (Thurs., April 9, 2020) Disney and ESPN executives made the call to pull the plug on UFC 249, which was set to go down inside Tachi Palace Casino Resort in Lemoore, Calif., on April 18, 2020.
Set to feature an interim title fight between Tony Ferguson and Justin Gaethje, the bout— as well as the rest of the promotion’s slate of events — will be rescheduled for later this year. Naturally, mixed martial arts (MMA) pros took to social media to react to the news that likely didn’t come to a surprise to many.
I trained 3 times a day whereever I could, dieted hard while stuck in quarantine, lost my opponent said yes to whoever else they can find, put my health on the line knowing there was a chance it wouldnt happen because I love what I do I’m a fighter. if your celebrating this ef u— Belal Muhammad (@bullyb170) April 9, 2020
Dana White (@danawhite) also made it clear to me after we wrapped the interview the UFC will still promote 42 events this year, which it was originally scheduled to do.— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) April 9, 2020
Mickey Mouse said cut the shit https://t.co/2WzZEQP5QP— Notorious KGB (@kgb_notorious) April 9, 2020
Sad for the fighters and fans who got their hopes up for this. But maybe it’s best to give this virus more time to blow over.— Aljamain Sterling (@funkmasterMMA) April 9, 2020
It’s probably bitter-sweet for many of the workers and fighters scheduled to scrap.
We all want to make money, but we want to protect our families too. https://t.co/zSg0KSWoy2
One week before. One fucking week before and it’s gone. If only they knew the sacrifice.— Alex Hernandez (@TheGreat155) April 9, 2020
Wow!!! It is what it is.... what can you do ♂️ https://t.co/9YA43h4aGF— Max Griffin (@MaxPainGriffin) April 9, 2020
I just accepted my 3rd opponent in a week... sucks. Stay safe everyone !— Chris Weidman (@chrisweidman) April 9, 2020
Fuck....— Ray Borg (@tazmexufc) April 9, 2020
Soft— Anthony Rocco Martin (@TonyRoccoMartin) April 9, 2020
Man I’m feeling for my fellow colleagues. This blows. #UFC249 canceled ❌— #OnAmission4Gold (@KelvinGastelum) April 9, 2020
The delay could possibly give Khabib Nurmagomedov the time he needs to slide back in as the rightful headliner of the card after he was forced to bow out because of travel restrictions; however, the deeply religious champion has admitted that he would not be ready to return until August because of Ramadan.
Furthermore, UFC President Dana White added that UFC 249 is only going to be postponed until he gets his fight island up and running in a few months.