Veteran MMA referee turned Bellator commentator John McCarthy believes the UFC’s second stab at promoting UFC 249 will be a success.
UFC 249 was originally expected to go down in Las Vegas on April 18. As the coronavirus crisis took hold, however, the card was briefly relocated to the Tachi Palace Casino on the same date, and ultimately canceled altogether.
Since then, the promotion has constructed a brand new UFC 249 card, composed of matchups scheduled for the original UFC 249 as well as matchups from other postponed events. This new card will go down this Saturday, May 9 in Jacksonville, Florida.
While the UFC’s first attempt at UFC 249 ultimately failed, McCarthy is optimistic this attempt will be successful.
“The UFC as a promotion, look, they’re a great promotion,” McCarthy told MMA Junkie of UFC 249 (via MMA News). “I would never sit there and say they’re not. And I know people that they use as medical advisors – Jeff Davidson is their chief guy that they go to and he’s a guy I’ve worked with as a ringside physician for years in Nevada, and he’s fantastic. He’s a great guy and I know that he’s putting together a plan and I know he’s going to be working with a guy called Don Moosie who is a physician in Florida who is also the president of the Ringside Physicians Association. So they’re doing everything that they can to make [ UFC 249 ] as functionally safe as possible. Does that mean they can cover every little gnat’s ass there is? No. That’s impossible unless they put people into quarantines for weeks before, and then weeks after. It’s a position where you can only go so far.
“But I believe they’re going to be doing all the right things for the officials, I believe they’ll be doing all the right things for the fighters, and there comes a point where you’ve got to start to try to move forward,” McCarthy added, giving UFC 249 his seal of approval. “And I think that, after waiting what they’ve waited, I think this is a good time, and the athletic commission in Florida is able and willing to do it, so I think anybody that asks me about doing this show, I would tell them, ‘Go do it.’ (The) prior show? ‘Don’t do it.’”
Are you with John McCarthy? Will UFC 249 be a success?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 5/5/2020.