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Dana White not interested in staging UFC events with only half of the fans in attendance

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UFC Fight Night: Chikadze v Rivera Photo by Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) president Dana White lived up to his promise by bringing back the fight business sooner, rather than later, in the midst of the COVID-19 global pandemic.

In a little over a month, UFC has gone on to stage six events and has no plans on slowing down, especially with the addition of “Fight Island” next month which will see several international stars get their time to shine.

And while Dana would love nothing more to get back to the old days of arenas packed with screaming fans, he won’t do it half-assed. Indeed, the outspoken head honcho says if he is given the option to fill an arena or stadium halfway to follow social-distancing protocols, he’ll shut down in its tracks.

“Yeah, I won’t do that,” White said, during the UFC on ESPN 10 post-fight presser (see it here) via MMA Fighting. “I won’t do a 50-percent arena. I’ll just stay here. It makes more sense just to stay here.”

Call me crazy, but isn’t at least half of the live gate money better than no money at all? Then again, the cost of renting out an arena and staging a fan-filled event may not be financially worth it if there's only 50-percent revenue trickling in.

Nevertheless, White and UFC aren’t in a too much of a hurry to leave the comfy confines of UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada, which boasts its own arena and (smaller) Octagon. And since Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) has lifted its ban on live sporting events, or at least in MMA, UFC events will continue to take place in “Sin City” and “Fight Island” in Abu Dhabi.

That said, White did reveal that he has been talking to some states who are slowly easing up on its coronavirus-related restrictions about the possibility of staging fan-filled events later this year.