UFC 249 is set to take place in just nine days and there are still a number of questions surrounding the event. Where will the event take place? How will fighters be transported to it? Will fighters be tested for coronavirus? And exactly what precautions will the UFC be using to mitigate the spread of coronavirus? Conflicting reports abound for each of those questions making details hard to come by not just for the larger MMA community but for people involved in the event, including the man ostensibly tasked with commentating the event.
UFC President Dana White recently said that Joe Rogan would in fact be calling UFC 249, however, on yesterday’s episode of his Joe Rogan Experience podcast, Rogan admitted that his still has no information about the event outside of Dana White’s statements about buying a private island to showcase fights on.
“We don’t know where it is,” Rogan said. “I’m trying to figure out what I’m doing, if I’m going to it or not. I don’t know where it is. I don’t even know if it’s in America. I literally, as of right now, I don’t know sh*t. I have no information.
“Fight Island. They’re gonna buy an island. Yes, [like the Bruce Lee movie] Enter the Dragon.”
It’s an unparalleled situation and “Fight Island” seems unlikely to play host to UFC 249 at least, given the short notice. Instead, reports suggest that UFC 249 will take place at Tachi Palace Resort Casino but whether Rogan will be willing to commentate still seems up in the air. Rogan has previously questioned the safety concerns around hosting such an event, saying he would not be involved. Now it seems Rogan may be willing to call the event, however he did note that there’s still some pretty major inherent risk in the UFC staying the course here.
“There’s no social distancing in a f*cking cage fight,” Rogan said. “They’re on top of each other sweating in each other’s mouths. If Tony Ferguson’s fighting, there’s gonna be blood, for sure. Everybody that fights Tony Ferguson looks like they fell off a train, so there’s gonna be blood. . .
“What if one of those guys test positive? What if Justin Gaethje tests positive? He’s supposed to be fighting Ferguson. . . I have a feeling that if someone did test positive, they would kick them off the card. I shouldn’t say kick them off the card, remove them from the card. I would imagine it has to be the right thing to do. Then you would also have to quarantine the people that worked with him in training camp and test everybody.”
All that being said, the UFC seems dead set on moving forward with this event. Initially, it appeared that Dana White’s insistence was founded in a desire to finally see lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov fight Tony Ferguson, a bout which has now fallen apart on five separate occasions. When Khabib was forced out of UFC 249 due to coronavirus travel restrictions, many thought that would signal the end of the card. Instead, now Justin Gaethje will step in to face Tony Ferguson for an interim lightweight title, and according to Rogan, that may be the death knell for UFC fans ever getting Tony vs. Khabib.
“Who knows man?” Rogan said when asked if Nurmagomedov and Ferguson would ever fight. “Not if something happens this weekend. Justin Gaethje is a monster. He’s a monster. He’s a terrifying individual. In a sport that’s violent - it’s an inherently violent sport - he stands out as the most violent. Do you know how crazy that is? You watch his knockout of Edson Barboza, you watch how that motherf*cker attacks people; there’s a reckless abandon to his calculated wildness that is terrifying. It’s terrifying. He’s something special and he’s better all the time.”
Afraid. Dana White: Everybody’s afraid to be first during the coronavirus pandemic except me and Vince McMahon.
The important things. USADA releases statement on UFC 249 testing.
Tough choices. Jacare Souza ‘scared’ by coronavirus pandemic, but ‘I have to take care of my family one way or the other’.
The A-Side Live Chat.
A long video on Justin Gaethje. For most fighters, a 20-minute video of highlights might be long. For Gaethje, it feels like four minutes.
Ali talking sh*t about Conor.
SOCIAL MEDIA BOUILLABAISSE
UFC 249 promo.
this is gonna be a FUN fight. Just a little over a week and we will be watchin a LIVE fight again!!! pic.twitter.com/DGJPbbod5F— danawhite (@danawhite) April 9, 2020
Apparently the Dutch broadcaster Talpa Network is not going to show UFC 249.
Can you just imagine if this was the “private island”?
The island is the Emerald Isle of Ireland ☘️— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) April 8, 2020
The UFC is dead set on Henry facing none of the top contenders apparently.
Dear @HenryCejudo,— Dominick Cruz (@DominickCruz) April 9, 2020
The real king has already been told that we’re fighting May 9th. I’ll see you there.
P.S. -Bring your other tiny lil friend @cptdasamericas so I can slap you both around.
-Signed, Sealed, Delivered-
Frankie also wants in.
Hey @HenryCejudo if Aldo can't make it to the show you know I’m game. I ain’t bending any knees but I might put my foot in your ass.— Frankie Edgar (@FrankieEdgar) April 8, 2020
Well, well, well look who we have here! Frankie “The wrong answer” Edgar. The only foot thats going up someone’s ass is my foot in yours. You saw what I did to your training partner you could be next to Bend The Knee to King Triple C! You have competition @dominickcruz https://t.co/teq1TanUqO— Henry Cejudo (@HenryCejudo) April 9, 2020
It’s like talking trash with my 9 year old. You want to square up you know who to tell. @danawhite— Frankie Edgar (@FrankieEdgar) April 9, 2020
“Flow Zone” Training Sesh A Success Time To Recover Do It Again # MentalTUFness -CSO- # Old Clip pic.twitter.com/HMweoXaq41— Tony Ferguson (@TonyFergusonXT) April 9, 2020
Chuck . . . this ain’t it.
jon jones because I think I would have matched up well with him style wise. I would have given him trouble because it would have been very hard to take me down and I would have been landing some insane power punches during my prime. I also have a longer reach than my stats detail https://t.co/QwP6mjUTHj— Chuck Liddell (@ChuckLiddell) April 8, 2020
Also, damn. That’s got to suck.
Hey Paige! Hope you are good and safe! I see you want to fight on that Island! Me toooo! Lets have some island fun!!! @UFCBrasil @ufc @danawhite @Mickmaynard2 @Alexdavismma @ParrumpaATT @Minotauromma @danawhite @canalCombate @espnmma @AnaHissa— Amanda Ribas (@amandaribasufc) April 8, 2020
Root for this man.
Island 5 for sure.
Where are you riding out the quarantine? pic.twitter.com/k6UB8vbRrD— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) April 9, 2020
Thanks for reading and see y’all tomorrow.
Where do you stand on the UFC moving forward with UFC 249?
This poll is closed
I support it
I’m against it
If you find something you’d like to see in the Morning Report, hit up @JedKMeshew on Twitter and let him know about it. Also follow MMAFighting on Instagram, add us on Snapchat at MMA-Fighting, and like us on Facebook.