While the UFC is set to return to action tonight with UFC 249, it looks like fans will have to wait until mid-July for a Bellator MMA return.
“We’re shooting for a mid-July start date, and that could be flexed one way or the other. We could go early-July or maybe even a week later, but we expect to be fully operational. It will look different. I will tell you; it will probably be in a South state somewhere in a closed environment and we’ll do our shows closed to the public, made for TV. So, we’ll have a nice set design and made for a TV show, more so than a live audience and a TV show,” Bellator MMA President Scott Coker said to Amy Kaplan of FanSided.
When the promotion does return, like Coker said, it will be done with empty arena events, similar to what the UFC is doing.
Fans can expect to see weekly events from Bellator MMA once they potentially return to action in mid-July.
“Starting in July, we expect to stay very busy and maybe, you know, do fights back-to-back weekends for the next six to eight weeks just to get caught up. [And] with the fights that we owe people and you know, the fights that we’re gonna owe people not just from the past from March, April and May and June, but also in July and August we’re gonna have fights that we owe people. So, we’re gonna have a lot of fights, in my opinion, starting in July, probably through September,” says Coker.
The next official event on the Bellator MMA schedule is Bellator Dublin, which isn’t scheduled to go down until October.