The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is expected to make its FOX Sports 1 debut on August 17 with “Shogun vs. Sonnen” at the TD Garden in Boston.
There’s just one problem, it is being reported by the Boston Herald that “Beantown” may not allow any foreign-born fighters to perform for not having social security numbers. The report also indicated that ZUFFA, parent company of UFC, has been notified of the proper protocol, but continues to try to find a way around it.
From Terrell Harris, spokesman for the state Department of Public Safety:
“This law has been in existence since we legalized mixed martial arts in the commonwealth of Massachusetts. It’s been brought to the attention of the UFC more than a few times since we legalized the fighting here. But they’ve chosen basically to ignore the law and hope that they could skirt it somehow. When they bring in fighters that are not American citizens, there are exceptions that allow them to obtain a Social Security number. The Social Security Administration will issue a temporary work visa but it’s up to them to do their due diligence.”
Some of the fighters scheduled for the UFC on FOX Sports 1 event that could be affected include: Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, who is expected to face Chael Sonnen in the evenings main event, as well as Alistair Overeem and Conor McGregor.
At this time, there is no confirmation on who has a social security number or temporary work via and who doesn’t. One thing is certain, the UFC has less than two months to get this thing straightened out, or they could be forced to rework a large portion of this fight card.
Stay tuned to BJPENN.com for further updates as they become available.