It looks as though UFC 249 will take place in “The Sunshine State.”
Multiple people with knowledge of the promotion’s plans confirmed to MMA Fighting that the May 9 pay-per-view event is slated to take place in Florida. The people, who requested anonymity because the promotion’s plans aren’t public, also confirmed that fighters will fly into Jacksonville before traveling to the still-undisclosed location.
UFC 249 was originally scheduled to take place April 18 in Brooklyn, N.Y., before it was moved to Tachi Palace Casino Resort in Lemoore, Calif. The event was officially postponed earlier this month due to concerns with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued an order earlier this month approving a list of essential businesses, which could include MMA. The order enables events for “employees at a professional sports and media production with a national audience — including any athletes, entertainers, production team, executive team, media team and any others necessary to facilitate including services supporting such production — only if the location is closed to the general public.”
The Florida State Boxing Commission confirmed in a follow up email to MMA Fighting that they are prepared to regulate a professional sports production as long as it adheres to the guidelines. The commission has already regulated one professional MMA event during the pandemic, employing social distancing and enhanced attendee screening for a show held in an empty arena.
UFC 249 is currently headlined by a pair of title fights: Tony Ferguson takes on Justin Gaethje for the interim lightweight title, and bantamweight champion Henry Cejudo defends his title against former champion Dominick Cruz.