With COVID-19 having a large impact on sporting events around the globe, sport-lovers are doing all that they can to continue their activities. One particular instance seems to trump all other efforts at resuming an athletic season.
Ultimate Fighting Champion (UFC) president, Dana White has found a way around the virus to continue airing fights. White has secured a private island where he will be hosting international fights for the public to view online. For safety and privacy reasons, the location of the island has not been reported.
White plans to bring in the top international fighters to match up against each other starting April 18. The current intention for the UFC season is to record fights on the island each week and air them through ESPN.
“I have this venue for two months, and we’re setting up shop here,” White said. “We’re going to be pumping out fights every week.”
The problem of air transport to this island is an important factor to consider. UFC fighter, Tony Ferguson, for example, is unable to travel from his home country, Russia, thereby delaying the long-awaited Ferguson vs Khabib Nurmagomedov showdown. With this in mind, White plans to use private planes to safely fly in his fighters to avert any chance of them being quarantined in another country.
White and the other UFC executives seem to have the whole situation under control as they are scheduling fights, booking private planes, and keeping the construction on ‘fight island’ in progress. With the next few fights already planned out, White’s goal is to fly out all the scheduled fighters onto the island as early as possible.
“I can ship guys over there earlier, and they can start training over there, on the island,” White said.
With all the uncertainty going around during this time, White’s game plan is the closest anyone has gotten to producing a large sporting event during this pandemic. It may seem like a loophole to get past the virus and the restrictions that come with it but no one really knows if it will be a success. For now, all anyone can do is wait and see what will happen come April 18.