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Odds Favor UFC Continuing With Fights Despite Potential Lockdown in US

Robert Duff

by Robert Duff in Mixed Martial Arts

Mar 16, 2020 · 9:34 AM PDT

UFC octagon
Prop wagers favor that the US government won't enforce a shutdown of the UFC by June 30. Photo by East718 (wikimedia commons).
  • A series of props relating to whether the UFC will be halted due to the coronavirus have been released
  • Will the US government enforce a UFC shutdown? Is the UFC going to go ahead with its March schedule of events?
  • All of the odds and picks related to these questions are outlined in the story that follows

The UFC fights on as the rest of the sports world is opting to heed the advice of disease-control experts and are shutting down to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Saturday saw UFC on ESPN+28 taking place in Brazil. However, bouts were staged in a stadium absent of spectators.

Odds have been released for a series of prop wagers dealing with what the future will hold for the promotion. Listed odds have “No” as the -200 favorite as to whether the US government will force UFC to shut down fights by June 30.

UFC Coronavirus Props

Proposition Yes Odds No Odds
Will the US Government Force UFC to Cancel Events by June 30? +200 -150
Will UFC 249 Occur on April 18 in Brooklyn? -120 -120
Will UFC Cancel/Suspend Upcoming Events in March? -120 -120

Odds taken Mar. 16. Requires UFC president Dana White stating that they were shutdown by the government for “Yes” bet to cash.

There are also props about if the UFC’s April 18th event in Brooklyn will go ahead. As well, there’s a prop offering odds on whether the promotion will cancel or suspend upcoming events in the month of March.

UFC Waits on US Government Call

UFC president Dana White is remaining defiant in the face of pressure to join the other big-league sports in shutting down his operation. In fact, White stated that the only way he’ll stop holding cards is if the government were to step in and put the entire country on lockdown.

“Unless there’s a total shutdown of the country where people can’t leave their houses and things like that, these fights will happen,” White told ESPN Sports Center. “We will find venues, and we will figure this thing out. I mean, the only thing that’s gonna stop us is a complete government shutdown where everyone is confined to their homes.”

Based on the US government’s approach to coronavirus, a total lockdown seems unlikely. White and US President Donald Trump are friends. In the early days of UFC, when the promotion was struggling to find venues willing to host cards, a number of UFC events took place in Trump’s casinos.

White indicated that he’d spoken to Trump and US Vice-President Mike Pence and was advised to, “Be cautious, be careful, but live your life and stop panicking.”

Brooklyn Card Doubtful

The April 18 date falls within the CDC recommendation for no gatherings of more than 50 people. Even without spectators, it’s still likely to require more than 50 people to put on a UFC event.

White guarantees the card, with its feature bout of Khabib Nurmagomedov vs Tony Ferguson for the UFC world lightweight title, will go forward.

It may but it won’t be taking place in Brooklyn.

Pick: No (-120)

UFC Cards Unlikely to Be Stopping

White is scrambling to find a location for a March 21 card originally slated for London. He’s also desperate to corral fighters who can travel and have the necessary documentation to fight anywhere they need to go.

He also needs to find new venues for UFC Columbus (March 28) and UFC Portland (April 11). White tried to switch them to Las Vegas. However, the Nevada Athletic Commission stepped in and banned such events.

White will find somewhere. There are enough corrupt governments in the world willing to put cash ahead of public safety.

Pick: No (-120)

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