Dana White has went on record that it was ESPN and Disney execs who convinced him to shut down UFC 249 and postpone the promotion’s event schedule indefinitely, but it may extend even further than that.
The word from the NYPost is that California governor Gavin Newsom himself may have got the ball rolling by personally contacting Disney to ask that the events be pulled after it emerged that the UFC had planned to host multiple events at the Tachi Palace casino in Lemoore, California on tribal lands.
News of UFC 249 being scapped then emerged just an hour after Californian Senator Dianne Feinstein had called for action to be taken to postpone the event.
“I’m concerned by reports that Ultimate Fighting Championship plans to hold a pay-per-view event in California, in defiance of the state’s shelter-in-place order. This event would involve dozens of individuals flying to California and driving to a casino for a purpose no one can honestly claim is essential.
“I understand this event is scheduled to take place on tribal land and therefore is not subject to state law. However, at best this event ties up medical resources and sends a message that shelter-in-place orders can be flouted. At worst, participants and support staff could carry the virus back to their home communities and increase its spread.
“I call on Ultimate Fighting Championship and the Tachi-Yokut Tribe to reconsider this event and delay it until a later date. We have to be responsible and mindful of all local, state and federal public health guidelines. Going ahead with this event is not the right move.”