EXCLUSIVE: Ringside Physicians cautious as UFC 249 plan is blasted
In an update on their blanket ban on all combat events, and in the wake of UFC 249 plans for May 9, The Association of Ringside Physicians has spoken.
Urging caution to any organizers looking to stage fights during the coronavirus crisis, The ARP is yet to fully approve any measures taken.
UFC boss Dana White, the man behind UFC 249, recently announced details of the card for Tony Ferguson vs Justin Gaethje. This is despite some boxing promoters being dead against it.
The ARP statement read: “The ARP recognizes that the circumstances regarding the COVID-19 pandemic are continually changing and evolving. As stay-at-home orders are relaxed, athletic commissions and combat sports governing bodies are looking to restart operations.
“Although it is impossible to eliminate all risks associated with COVID-19, precautions can be made to reduce the risk of viral transmission.
“Many athletic commissions, organizations, and promotors are developing new guidelines to limit exposure to all involved at events. This includes athletes, their teams, commission personnel, and support staff.
“Combat sports event procedures regarding COVID-19 precautions should be actively developed. Also, regularly reviewed, and modified based on the evolving knowledge and scientific evidence put forth by public health authorities.
“These guidelines should also involve local and regional public health officials. As well as infectious disease experts and epidemiologists.
“Our thoughts continue to be with those who have been and will be affected by this disease.
“We remain steadfast in our mission to serve, protect, and educate all involved in combat sports.
“If any combat sports organization would like help in developing its guidelines, the ARP can provide assistance and guidance.”
Top Rank boss Bob Arum recently aired his view to WBN.
“This is government level. We are waiting in Nevada, which is on lockdown. What will the Governors allow and what won’t they allow?” Arum exclusively told World Boxing News.
“We are certainly not like the UFC and Dana White, (with UFC 249) we are not cowboys. We will do this correctly with this pandemic going on.
“It’s very important that people in boxing act like responsible citizens,” he added.
Boxing seems to be at least five or six weeks away from putting on their own shows. Lockdown canceled several high-profile Pay-Per-Views back in March.
Without spectators being allowed in venues, it’s highly unlikely many of those fights will be re-staged behind closed doors.
Therefore, many headliners may simply choose a stay-busy opponent. That’s until social distancing eases off and trials over a vaccine become clearer.
UFC 249 takes place this Saturday night in Florida.