UFC president Dana White said that the world’s leading MMA promotion is hoping to host sold-out arenas of MMA fans by the summer of 2021.
The UFC has not been able to host a house full of fans since UFC 248 in March 2020. The coronavirus pandemic led to the promotion literally shutting its doors for two months only to return in May 2020 in Florida for a series of events. The promotion has been able to hold events back in Las Vegas and in Abu Dhabi for the last nine months, but for the most part, fans have not been allowed except for a select few who were allowed into Fight Island. The UFC has not held a sold-out show with fans in a year.
Hopefully, that changes soon, said White, when speaking to reporters following UFC 258. The UFC head said that he hopes to have sold-out arenas by this summer at the earliest in Florida or in Las Vegas. However, White said that he won’t be doing a small percentage of fans in the arenas like some other sports are doing. For White, it’s a sell-out or bust.
“I’m not doing a percentage. I want to sell out. It’s too nice over here (in Vegas). I like it here,” White said (via MMAjunkie.com). “I said on ESPN the other day that I was optimistic that by this summer we could be doing it, either in Florida or here.”
With vaccines for COVID-19 becoming more widely available as time goes on, there is definitely the possibility that the UFC returns with fans later this summer. Having a full arena does seem like a bit of a stretch considering the pandemic still exists, but it does at least appear we are getting closer to finally emerging from the darkness of no fans.
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