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US State of Florida may serve as potential venue for Nurmagomedov-Ferguson UFC title fight

UFC President Dana White announced on Tuesday that he found a new location for the fight between Nurmagomedov and Ferguson, but declined to specify the venue
UFC President Dana White AP Photo/Stephan Savoia
UFC President Dana White
© AP Photo/Stephan Savoia

MOSCOW, March 25. /TASS/. The administration of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is holding talks on the organization of the fight between Russia’s UFC Reigning Lightweight Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and US fighter Tony Ferguson next month in the State of Florida, the United States, MMA correspondent Steven Marrocco announced on his Twitter page on Wednesday.

"Industry source just told me UFC in active talks to hold UFC 249 in Florida using same setup as Combat Night event," Steven Marrocco tweeted. "Orlando, Tampa and Jacksonville mentioned as potential hosts."

UFC President Dana White announced on Tuesday that he found a new location for the fight between Nurmagomedov and Ferguson, but declined to specify the venue.

Nurmagomedov’s team signed a contract last November for the Russian fighter to face American Tony Ferguson at a UFC event in Brooklyn, New York, on April 18, 2020, in Barclays Center. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio announced earlier in the month the state of emergency in response to the novel coronavirus pandemic, which includes the cancellation and postponement of various sports events.

The New York State Athletic Commission announced on March 18 its decision to cancel the bout between the Russian and US fighters next month as a preventive measure against the ongoing global spread of the novel coronavirus as well as in accordance with restrictions by New York State limiting large public gatherings.

Last month, a spokesman for Nurmagomedov’s team told TASS that the Russian fighter and his team set off to the United States in mid-February for trainings ahead of his bout against the American opponent. US fighter Tony ‘El Cucuy’ Ferguson, 36, has a record of 25 wins (12 by KOs, eight by submission and five by decision) and three defeats.

Nurmagomedov was set to hold his trainings at the American Kickboxing Academy (AKA), which is a martial arts gym and one of the pioneer schools of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) based in San Jose, California. Russian UFC fighters Islam Makhachev and Umar Nurmagomedov also joined Khabib for the trainings in San Jose.

UFC Reigning Champ Nurmagomedov

In early September last year, Nurmagomedov defended his UFC champion’s belt for the second time in a title unification bout in Abu Dhabi against Dustin Poirier of the United States. The Russian defeated his US opponent with a choke in Round 3.

The 31-year-old Russian fighter, nicknamed ‘The Eagle,’ currently holds an unblemished record of 28 wins in all of his mixed martial arts fights (8 by KOs, 10 by submission and 10 by decision).

Khabib Nurmagomedov, hailing from Russia’s North Caucasus Region of Dagestan, was the first Russian to win the UFC champion title during the fight against his US opponent Al Iaquinta in the spring of 2018.

On April 8, 2018, Nurmagomedov routed Al Iaquinta in a five-round fight for the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) lightweight belt in New York.

At the UFC 229 tournament in Las Vegas in October 2018, Nurmagomedov defended his champion’s title in the fight against Conor McGregor, a renowned Irish professional mixed martial arts fighter and boxer.