Saturday evening, Daniel Cormier tweeted a video that showed the preparations for UFC 249. The fights, which will be headlined by Tony Ferguson vs. Justin Gaethje, were originally planned for April 18 before being canceled. The highly-anticipated event has now returned and will be held without fans in attendance, which caught some Twitter users by surprise.
Cormier's video showed a mostly-empty stadium, as well as tables spread around the octagon. There were specific areas for the commentators, translators, audio-video team and the commissioners. Several officials walked around wearing masks and gloves to avoid potentially spreading or contracting COVID-19. The emptiness was surreal, but Cormier was excited about the upcoming action.
When this video surfaced, there were numerous reactions. Some fans felt that it was much too early for the UFC to return from its postponement. In their opinion, having Jacare Souza test positive for the coronavirus following weigh-ins just added another level of risk. Others, however, were very excited about the return of Mixed Martial Arts. They have been missing the UFC since the last event on March 14 and were overjoyed about the various bouts.
I've never been more proud to be a part of this sport than I am today. In tough times, you need tough people; from the fighters, corners, their families, my staff, production, the athletic commission, and most importantly, the physicians and nurses that made tonight a reality. pic.twitter.com/65YzMLkCsD— danawhite (@danawhite) May 9, 2020
Shouldn’t be happening period. Already one confirmed covid 19 case. I’m psyched to see the fights but risking your lives for it? No it’s stupid and shows the WME cares more for its profits then its fighters.— Clint Diewold (@clintdiewold) May 9, 2020
Are y’all commentating with masks on?— Trent (@TitanUpTrent) May 9, 2020
I don’t think they would let them have this event if they weren’t taking these precautions, athletic commission and local government require it, negative or positive— Horse Beef (@22poster) May 9, 2020
They should have made cardboard fan cutouts in seats .— Nick Fernandez (@Nick3191984) May 9, 2020
Just wont be the same If Joe and DC dont touch each other when something incredible inevitably happens pic.twitter.com/oGlx0lrTDF— v=Hr (@FunnyFails21) May 9, 2020
All those empty seats man... pic.twitter.com/KByV2dYRxA— Out Of Context Tony (@ElCucuyMemes) May 9, 2020
If everyone tested negative and is wearing masks, why the distancing?— D🍩NUTS (@SteelyZidane) May 9, 2020
Its a new experience that won't last forever but try to make the best of it— Nathan Leclair (@Leclair511) May 9, 2020
People will be very sick, dude— P. Boone Yakowitz® 🐟 (@petebujnak) May 9, 2020
I’ll watch but it’ll b lame— David P 🇻🇮🇺🇸🇬🇧 (@pemdave) May 9, 2020
Can’t believe fights are about to start!!!! #UFC249— #OnAmission4Gold (@KelvinGastelum) May 9, 2020
Here we go again! Finally the sport is back to our life! Can’t wait the evening— Сантино Брюков (@SashaAmerica) May 9, 2020
That’s all that matters is the FIGHTS!!— Eric Guillot (@EricGuillot14) May 9, 2020