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Odds Favor at Least 1 Fight from UFC Fight Night 173 Card Being Canceled Due to COVID-19

Cole Shelton

by Cole Shelton in Mixed Martial Arts News

Updated Mar 23, 2021 · 1:00 PM PDT

Derrick Lewis
Derrick Lewis, right, connects with a kick to Ilir Latifi during a heavyweight mixed martial arts bout at UFC 247 on Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020, in Houston. (AP Photo/Michael Wyke)
  • UFC held UFC 249 on May 9 
  • One fight was canceled on Friday after a positive test
  • Read below to see if we think the same happens for Wednesday’s card

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) became the first sport back with a stacked UFC 249 event on Saturday night. Although it came with some criticism, the promotion held the event and did so with COVID-19 testing in place.

Now, after UFC 249, the UFC will be back on Wednesday, May 13 for UFC: Smith vs. Glover and on Sat. May 16 for UFC: Harris vs. Overeem. It will be interesting to see the UFC turn the hotel and all the training centers over in such a quick period of time, and sportsbooks think we will see another fight from Wedesnday’s card fall off due to a positive test for COVID-19.

Will a Fight Be Canceled During COVID-19?

Outcome Odds
Yes -180
No +140

*All odds taken May 10

Did Any Fights Fall Off From UFC 249?

All UFC 249 fight week, many fans were worried the event would end up getting canceled because of the coronavirus. Yet, the promotion had the support of the Florida commission and the local and state government.  So, the event ended up happening but on Friday night, the worst-case scenario happened.

YouTube video

Less than 24 hours before the event would happen, news came out that Jacare Souza tested positive for the coronavirus, and his fight against Uriah Hall was canceled. It was shocking news as the Brazilian’s wife had the virus and he and his two cornermen became asymptomatic.

With Souza’s positive test, it proved to the MMA community that anyone can contract the virus — even elite-level mixed martial artists.

When Are Fighters Being Tested?

It’s not 100% clear what days fighters will be tested for the virus for this Wednesday card. For this 249 event, the fighters I talked to said they got the COVID-19 nasal swab on Wednesday when they arrived and on Friday.

For this Wednesday card, I’ve been told they will be testing twice again, but what days is uncertain as Wednesday cards are unique and I’m not sure when fighters will arrive.

Currently, there are 11 fights scheduled on the card with Anthony Smith battling Glover Teixeira at light heavyweight in the main event. Other notable fights include Drew Dober vs. Alexander Hernandez, Ray Borg vs. Ricky Simon, and Andrei Arlovski vs. Philipe Lins.

What’s The Best Bet?

I’m honestly surprised at these odds as I figured, if anything, both options should be even money. UFC president Dana White said the testing will only get better for these Wednesday and Saturday cards and it truly is anyone’s guess if someone has the virus.

Right now, I think the best bet is to say there will not be any fights canceled due to the coronavirus, so at +140, give me those odds.

Pick: No (+140)

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