White Planning May 9 Return
UFC president Dana White has everything planned for the promotion to resume its fight schedule next month.
White was initially planning on resuming the fight schedule starting with UFC 249 this upcoming weekend. However, he was told to stand down by Disney executives amid growing concerns during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic as all future UFC events were indefinitely postponed.
It didn’t last for long, however. It was reported earlier this week that the UFC was planning on returning on May 9 with a super stacked card. And this time, the UFC head honcho has everything figured out — even if things will be very expensive in the process.
“I was supposed to go this Saturday at Tachi Palace in northern California. I got it done. We could go,” White said on Sirius XM NASCAR Radio (via MMA Fighting). “I was asked to not do the event from my partners [at ESPN], who I respect, so I did it. I gave them the weekend off and I’m actually at the office right now. We’re back in here. We’re working. I have a date now for May 9.
“… Listen I’m not stopping. I have this thing figured out. The reality is can it be done? Yes, it can be done. It’s just very expensive. It’s very expensive and I’m willing to spend the money to do it.”
White has already claimed he would be the first to bring back sports during the current pandemic and that looks set to be the case. While other sports remain in lingo, the 50-year-old instead prefers to take the initiative.
“I don’t sit around and wait for somebody to tell me it’s time to do this, it’s time to do that,” White said. “You’ve got to look ahead at what’s happening out there. My commitment is to my employees and to my fighters. I don’t want [to] lay anybody off and I don’t want fighters sitting around for a year not being able to make money but I want everybody to be safe.
“Instead of hiding from this thing, how do you get out there and figure out how to function yet be safe about it. My biggest problem with this whole thing is misinformation. You read one thing here, you read something different over here. Nobody really knows what’s going on. It’s been a very strange thing to deal with.”
White recently revealed he also planned on hosting events at the UFC Apex once the state of Nevada lifts the current ban for combat sports.
As for the location of the potential May 9 event? There is likely zero chance we will be hearing about it given what happened to UFC 249.