UFC News: Fox Sports have got Conor McGregor vs Tony Ferguson scheduled for UFC 249 in Brooklyn

Conor McGregor v Donald Cerrone

UFC 249 has been quite a roller-coaster, hasn't it?

Despite virtually all other sports ceasing activity due to the COVID-19 pandemic, UFC president Dana White remains adamant that the event will still take place as scheduled on April 18 - and has insisted that he will release details of the location of the card shortly.

The pay-per-view event had originally been slated to take place at the Barclays Center in New York and was to be headlined by the long-awaited clash between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson for the UFC lightweight championship.

However, the state of New York has been particularly badly hit by coronavirus - and it became apparent several weeks ago that the card would no longer be able to take place in its intended location.

Despite this, White opted not to cancel the card. Instead, he swiftly began a worldwide search to find a host venue for the fights. 

Initially, it seemed as though Abu Dhabi would be the new home of the event. Armed with this information, lightweight champion Khabib immediately made his way to the United Arab Emirates to continue training for his fight.

Unfortunately, for Khabib, the UAE then followed the lead of many other countries around the world by closing its borders - ending any chance of the fight taking place there.

Khabib was then forced to quickly leave the country, so as to avoid ending up stuck there.

At this point, Khabib's home of Russia had yet to lock down its borders. The undefeated champion, therefore, opted to return to Russian soil - and await further instruction from the UFC brass.

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Shortly after landing, though, Khabib learned that Russia would also be imposing immediate travel restrictions.

Regrettably, this time there would be no alternative available to Khabib. It soon emerged that he would be unable to leave Russia. In short - Khabib was out of UFC 249.

In the aftermath of this news, many fighters declared that they would be willing to compete on the card in Khabib's absence, regardless of where it ended up taking place.

Names such as Tyron Woodley, Colby Covington and Justin Gaethje were among those to offer their services.

Conor McGregor v Donald Cerrone

Indeed, Ferguson was reported to have been offered the main event fight against Gaethje last week.

However, the 36-year-old top contender was said to have rejected the fight - insisting that he was only prepared to remain on the card if he would be facing one of two men: Either Khabib or Conor McGregor.

The Khabib option is, of course, now off the table. A glance at the UFC schedule on Fox Sports' website, though, reveals a curious-looking main event for UFC 249.

The former broadcast partner of the UFC actually lists the headline attraction for the card as being McGregor Vs Ferguson.


Under normal circumstances, it would be easy to dismiss this as the Fox site being out of date. However, one must remember McGregor has never been officially scheduled for this card. Does Fox know more than they are letting on - or is this simply an admin error?

It has to be deemed exceptionally unlikely that McGregor would be cleared to take a fight on such short notice, especially given the perilous state of the world at present.

Stranger things have certainly happened in the world of MMA though.

Whatever the truth is, we do not have long to wait to discover the fate of UFC 249. If the promotion is to stage a card on April 18, White will need to reveal some concrete details - as he has promised - fairly soon.

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