UFC Brasilia To Be A Closed-Door Event
Last week, UFC President Dana White was keeping track of the coronavirus, but did not provide any legitimate updates as to how the organization would handle the issue. As the virus continues to spread, they are now working overtime to fix an upcoming event.
According to Combate (via MMAJunkie), UFC Fight Night 170 will be closed off to fans. Expected to take place inside Nilson Nelson Gymnasium in Brazil this weekend, the location can hold up to 11,000-16,000 people. Additionally, media day and the ceremonial weigh-ins have been cancelled. The official weigh-in, usually set in the morning, is still on for UFC Brasilia.
“Due to consideration of the government’s decree yesterday, Ultimate Media Day has been cancelled,” the UFC stated, via Cageside Press. “Content featuring the athletes scheduled to fight in Saturday’s event will be captured and shared with credentialed media members in advance of the event.”
The UFC has yet to make an official announcement on fans not being allowed to enter the arena.
This comes after Ibaneis Rocha, governor of the area, declared a ban on all major gatherings within the area. The ban is until next Monday as of this moment. He is not the first to do this, as Italy forced a ban before having to shut the country down. The United States is currently doing that on a state-level, with Ohio governor Mike DeWine recommending that be done in his area. That could result in a big change in the way UFC Columbus is held.
The fight card is just days away, and it is unknown how the UFC will further handle the situation. The scheduled main event for the card will be Kevin Lee facing Charles Oliveira in a pivotal lightweight bout. The co-main event is Demian Maia v. Gilbert Burns.
The UFC is in a tough spot here, as decisions are being made as to what to do with sports in general. Yesterday, the NBA stopped the season early, halting it until further notice after Jazz player Rudy Gilbert tested positive for the coronavirus. Earlier today, ONE Championship announced all major events until the end of May will be closed off to fans.
According to the latest from CNN, over 124,000 cases of the virus have been confirmed with over 4,607 deaths.