The COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the globe has caused the sporting world to grind to a virtual standstill, with even MMA forced to step down its efforts to plow on in the face of rising health concerns.
The outbreak has changed daily living for people in all walks of life, with terms like “self-isolation,” and “social distancing,” not to mention more hand washing than ever before becoming part of our daily routines.
With their main sources of income now severely curtailed, everyone in the MMA world finds themselves facing a different battle in an effort to stay safe as they, like the rest of us, adapt to a new normal during the global health crisis.
Via this page, we’ll keep you right up to date with the latest developments and stories throughout the coronavirus crisis.
(Editor’s note: This will continue to be updated as events unfold with the latest info in chronological from top to bottom.)
Thursday, March 26
Conor McGregor message grows even stronger
Conor McGregor, the biggest star in the UFC, has been vocal on social media about the dangers of coronavirus, and that continued with a tweet in which he shamed those being reckless while lockdowns are in place around the world.
More than double our deaths in one day. It’s on now, men and women.
Stay vigilant. Stay distant. Stay active. Keep your immune system healthy and strong in every possible way you can!
Shame on the wreckless.
RIP those we have lost to date and God speed to us all!
Gilbert Burns calls for coronavirus testing by UFC
UFC welterweight Gilbert Burns said he’s OK with the UFC trying to continue with its event schedule April 18, so long as there is testing in place specifically for the coronavirus.
Dana White irate over report about UFC layoffs
UFC president Dana White was none too pleased to read a report claiming that the promotion has laid off employees and blasted the “scumbag” who wrote it.
“(Wednesday), this scumbag posted a story that says ‘UFC hit with layoffs,’ and he was literally gloating about it,” White said. “First of all, it’s not true. I’m going to tell you guys again: Most of what you read is not true. Literally these scumbags write lies, and this guy was gloating about it and saying stuff like, ‘Hey Dana, you have bosses now. You should check with them before you whatever.’ No, I don’t. You don’t know anything about this (expletive) situation, and you definitely know nothing about the sport, you jerkoff.”
White also insisted that the UFC will get through the coronavirus pandemic without laying off anyone.
‘King Mo’ hopes everyone is taking pandemic seriously
Muhammed Lawal, who serves as a coach at American Top Team, spoke to MMA Junkie Radio about the effect of the coronavirus outbreak on fighters at the gym.
“It already started (messing with fighters),” Lawal told MMA Junkie Radio. “Right when it was said cards will be canceled for a while, fighters were wondering, ‘If I’m fighting in June, is that messed up? What about this?’ But June is two months from now. You got people with fights in June wondering if they’re going to be fighting. You have people also on the shelf looking for fights wondering, ‘Will I be on the shelf further, longer?’ So right now, everybody is in limbo.”
Wednesday, March 25
Cage Warriors postpones events
On the heels of following through with a behind-closed-doors Cage Warriors 113, the promotion announced that two shows have been postponed.
Bryce Mitchell believes in government conspiracy
UFC prospect Bryce Mitchell thinks a conspiracy is in play with the coronavirus, believing that the government created it and infected people.
“I blame the government. I really do,” he told MMA Junkie. “It’s usually who I blame for everything. I think the coronavirus was made by the government. I think the good government made the damn virus. I think that they infected the people on purpose to cause some type of chaos. There’s some people making good money and stuff.”
Conor McGregor’s PSA heard loud and clear by Ireland’s government
After making an impassioned plea for a “lockdown united,” Conor McGregor revealed Wednesday that his message made its way to Ireland’s government, with the Prime Minister of Finance Paschal Donohoe responding directly to the former UFC two-division champion (via Twitter).