Original UFC 250 Venue Converted to Field Hospital for Coronavirus Patients in Sao Paulo

By Tristen Critchfield Apr 8, 2020
Ibirapuera Gymnasium, which was originally expected to be the host venue for UFC 250, has taken on a different role during the coronavirus pandemic.

Brazilian government has designated the facility, which is located in Sao Paulo, for use as a field hospital to help treat the growing number of COVID-19 patients in the area, according to reports from Combate and MMAFighting.com. As of Wednesday afternoon, Brazil has reported more than 14,000 cases of coronavirus.

As a result, Ibirapuera Gymnasium will not be available for any other event until September, which officially eliminates it from consideration as a host for UFC 250. The Las Vegas-based promotion will reportedly hold UFC 249 at Tachi Palace Casino Resort in Lemoore, Calif., on April 18, and promotion president Dana White claims to have locked down a venue to host events for the next two months — a timeframe that would include UFC 250. White has also indicated that he is securing a “private island” in hopes of holding fights with international fighters that are unable to travel to the United States.

According to Combate, the promotion has contacted Brazilian fighters scheduled to compete at UFC 250 regarding their ability to travel to the United States. Some have already been pulled from the card due to an inability to obtain a visa in time for the event. It is unclear if Jose Aldo, who is expected to challenge Henry Cejudo for the bantamweight belt in the co-main event, will be able to fight in the United States. UFC 250 is headlined by a women’s bantamweight title clash between Amanda Nunes and Felicia Spencer; both main event combatants are located in the U.S.


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