There is no question about it that the coronavirus pandemic has negatively affected the world of sports, which is something that UFC President Dana White is familiar with.
White claims that while the UFC prohibits fighters who test positive for COVID-19 fight, other sports are letting their COVID-19 positive athletes still play.
“Look at the history here,” White said after Contender Series Episode 32 (via Mike Heck of MMA Fighting). “Look at what we’ve done and how it’s all worked out. One of the things that we’re not doing that other sports are doing is there’s people that keep testing positive but they have no symptoms and they’re not contagious. They’re letting those guys play, whether it’s the NBA or Major League Baseball. We’re not. That’s the difference.”
Each sport has handled the coronavirus pandemic differently, with sports like the MLB and NBA having shortened seasons, while other sports don’t let any fans in attendance and others, like some NCAA Football conferences, have canceled seasons altogether.
The UFC Vegas 9 card was one of the UFC events that was affected the most by the coronavirus, which is a situation White called “wacky.”
“We just had a situation last week where they tested negative, negative, then tested positive,” White explained. “This thing is f*ckin wacky and you do the best you can. We’re doing everything the right way and, who knows with this thing? Nobody has been able to get this thing figured out yet. We’ve been solid.”
A list compiled by MMA Mania shows that at least 28 UFC fighters have been pulled from fights or had their bouts rescheduled due to the coronavirus since August 31.