Several Fights For UFC London Scrapped Due To Coronavirus Outbreak
Despite the coronavirus affecting people all over the world, the UFC is attempting to continue as if it is business as usual. Dana White recently went on SportsCenter and stated they are looking to move several events, including this week’s UFC London show. Due to the travel ban by the United States and several places banning events from taking place, it has been a true test for the White and company.
With Nevada out of the question as a result of the Nevada Athletic Commission putting a halt to all combat sport events until late March, there are not a lot of options for the UFC. That has led to fighters pulling out of the event, the UFC scrapping fights altogether and the company asking anyone available to fight. The latter memo by the UFC was provided by Ariel Helwani.
This is an email they are sending out to managers and reps about this new card next week. As you can see, they are even open to signing fighters who currently aren’t on the roster to fill it up, as well. pic.twitter.com/qYcYCDvdyo
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) March 15, 2020
Thee planned Leon Edwards v. Tyron Woodley bout is off after Edwards decided to take himself off the event. Travel restrictions have caused Edwards to be unsure of how he will be getting back and forth from home to wherever the event will be.
View this post on Instagram
Last night I went to sleep still with some hope that UFC London would continue next week. I woke up this morning to the news that it won't be. We have been working with the UFC on possible solutions to keep the fight alive, but unfortunately with such a short window of time, nothing was viable. Myself and my team are all fathers, husbands, sons and brothers, and not all of us can leave our families right now. I wish we could have found a way for the fans, I truly do. I have been dreaming of headlining a UFC show in my home country since I started this sport. This cancellation is truly heartbreaking. I have never worked harder and never been more prepared for the biggest moment in my career. But I know that the whole world is hurting right now and this is bigger than me, this is bigger than sports. All I can hope for is that all of you stay safe and look after each other as we get past this and move forward. I am humbled by the thousands of messages of support I have received in the hours since the announcement, I truly appreciate you all and feel a lot of love right now. I look forward to this event being rebooked when it is safe to do so, so Tyron and I can put on the show that you all deserve. Please take care, we will all get through is. Rocky
The UFC is currently trying to find a fight for Woodley. Opponents that have stepped up and offered their services include Colby Covington, Gilbert Burns and Rafael Dos Anjos.
Other fights that are off or need to be altered include, according to MMAJunkie:
- Danny Roberts v. Nicolas Dalby: canceled
- Molly McCann v. Ashlee Evans-Smith: canceled
- Evans-Smith was already in London when the news of her fight got cut broke.
Ashlee Evans-Smith on Instagram: "I've been in London for two days, actually only 24 hours on the ground. Anyway, fight's off, postponed, all I really know is that I've got to get back to California, yesterday basically."
— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) March 15, 2020
- Bartosz Fabinski v. Shavkat Rakhmonov: canceled
- Tom Aspinall v. Jake Collier: canceled.
- Collier is still looking to fight even though Aspinall is off the card. According to him, the UFC is still looking to book him a fight.
We were supposed to head out to London tonight. But I got the call that plans have changed. I am still fighting. Awaiting further instructions. #FightGame
— Jake Collier (@Jakecollier88) March 15, 2020
- Kevin Holland v. Jack Marshman: canceled
- The UFC is actively trying to find a fight Holland, as Marshman will be the only one not competing.
- Darren Stewart v. Marvin Vettori: canceled
- Jack Shore v. Geraldo de Freitas: canceled
- Gabriel Benitez v. Lerone Murphy: canceled
- Danny Roberts v. Nicolas Dalby: canceled
- Marc Diakiese v. Jau Herbert: canceled
- Mike Grundy v. Makwan Amirhani: canceled
- John Phillips v. Dusko Todorovic: canceled
Only a select number of fights are still on. The UFC may be looking to do a combined card with another promotion in order to keep the event alive.
According to the latest from CNN, there have been over 164,837 cases of the coronavirus with over 6,470 deaths.