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UFC to return on 9 May with two world title fights

Tom Llewellyn April 22, 2020

UFC 249 has been postponed, relocated and cancelled, but the event has now been reinstated for 9 May in Florida and will be televised on ESPN Pay-Per-View only.

Multiple sources told MMA Fighting that UFC 249 would return at an undisclosed location in the Sunshine State.

The rumours were confirmed by ESPN’s Bret Okamoto, who tweeted: “Guys, breaking news: the UFC’s next event has an official name. Per the organisation, 9 May at a location TBA, is officially … UFC 249. Tell your friends.”

Florida had been rumoured as host for the event after state governor Ron DeSantis issued an order last week that added professional sports to the list of essential businesses allowed to remain open during the pandemic.


The card

The card will still be headlined by the interim lightweight championship fight between Tony Ferguson and Justin Gaethje.

However, there may now be multiple world title fights on the UFC’s returning card, with reports bantamweight world champion Henry Cejudo and former world champion Dominick Cruz are close to finalising a contract for the event.

Unfortunately, Amanda Nunes has ruled herself out of defending her woman’s bantamweight belt against Felicia Spencer, while Rose Namajunas has also had to pull out of her scheduled rematch with Jessica Andrade due to injury.

One bout confirmed for UFC 249 is the heavyweight clash between Francis Ngannou and Jairzinho Rozenstruik, which was officially signed off on Tuesday (21 April).

Other confirmed fights include Donald Cerrone versus Anthony Pettis 2, Calvin Kattar versus Jeremy Stephens, Greg Hardy versus Yorgan De Castro, Fabricio Werdum versus Aleksei Oleinik and Uriah Hall versus Jacare Souza.

Regular events

UFC president Dana White has said he plans to start holding regular events next month from the UFC Apex Centre in Las Vegas but is waiting for permission from the Nevada State Athletic Commission.

In the meantime, we will (hopefully) see UFC return to our screens live from Florida on 9 May with a superb card featuring two world title fights.

More UFC 249 details are expected to be announced in the next few days.

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As the resident-geek at HITC Entertainment, Tom covers everything from anime and manga to Korean dramas and World TV. Tom boasts an undergraduate degree in both Animal Behaviour from Aberystwyth University and a postgraduate degree Science Communications from UWE Bristol and has over 5 years’ experience in writing about the weird and wonderful world of global entertainment.