The UFC 249 location has reportedly been unveiled.
UFC 249 is scheduled to take place on April 18. The new main event for the card is scheduled to be Tony Ferguson vs. Justin Gaethje for the interim UFC lightweight title. Khabib Nurmagomedov was set to put his 155-pound gold on the line against Ferguson but he’s stuck in Russia due to a travel ban amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
UFC 249 Reportedly Set For Tribal Land In California
Jeff Sherwood first reported that UFC 249 will be held inside the Tachi Palace Casino Resort in California. The New York Times later said they confirmed Sherwood’s report.
Since this location is on tribal land, that makes the stay-at-home order in California exempt for UFC 249. The UFC also won’t have to adhere to the Californa State Athletic Commission.
UFC president Dana White told ESPN that he didn’t want to give away the location for the April 18 event in an effort to “keep the creeps at bay” (h/t MMAMania.com).
“There’s a lot of creepy people out there, and when they find out the location, they will start attacking the location and making phone calls,” White told ESPN. “So this keeps the creeps at bay.”
“[These fights] are taking place on ESPN+…. It doesn’t matter [where the events are physically taking place] because nobody can go anyway,” White said. “Nobody can show up, nobody can go. There are some members of the media who have reached out to me who want to go, and I’ll bring them. I’ll bring some of these media members who want to go. But, other than that, it’s not open to the fans … so it’s on ESPN+ — that’s it, that’s all anybody needs to know.
“We’re going to get all the fighters somewhere … and we’re going to bring them to this location,” White continued. “They won’t know where they are headed.”
White has gone above and beyond in his efforts to run as many UFC events as possible during the coronavirus pandemic. He even claimed the promotion is securing a private island for future events.