UFC considered moving Fight Night 28 to smaller arena in Brazil

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Tickets sales are not doing well for UFC Fight Night 28 so the organization tried to change plans.

MMAFighting.com learned from sources close to the UFC that the organization considered moving the event to Chevrolet Hall in Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, instead of doing the show at Mineirinho Arena. The two buildings are located seven miles away from each other.

Combate first reported the possibility, revealing that only 4,200 tickets were sold. Last June, UFC 147 drew 16,643 fans to Mineirinho Arena.

Technical problems prevented the change, then the organization has decided to reduce the space for fans in the stands.

On Wednesday night, Atletico Mineiro, one of Minas Gerais’ biggest soccer teams, will play against Fluminense, the current national champion, at Independencia Stadium in Belo Horizonte. In the first half of the year, Atletico Mineiro had the average attendance of 18.261 fans when playing in the stadium.

The lack of stars on the card, which is headlined by Glover Teixeira and Ryan Bader, was reflected on the slow ticket sales. The change of venues would mean that they would need to sell less 12,000 tickets to sell out the event.

Despite being a Minas Gerais native, Glover Teixeira has almost zero connection with the state. He left the state and ended up training with Chuck Liddell in the United States almost a decade ago, and then moved back to Rio de Janeiro to train with Pedro Rizzo.

Rafael Natal and Lucas Martins are only two of the 24 fighters of the card born in the city of Belo Horizonte. Natal has a strong fan base on the state, with several gyms and hundreds of students, and he fights Tor Troeng on the main card, but that wasn’t enough to help increase the ticket sales.

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