Anxious fight fans waiting for UFC 249 were recently dealt some bad news as Khabib Nurmagomedov revealed he is currently stuck in Dagestan, Russia. Taking to Instagram live, the reigning UFC Lightweight Champion revealed that he is unable to leave to compete against Tony Ferguson April 18 due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic forcing travel bans that have closed borders in Russia.
According to Khabib, he and his American Kickboxing Academy team left San Jose, California after the UFC told them the fight 100 percent isn’t happening in the States and will 99 percent take place in the Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. But when they arrived in Abu Dhabi they learned that the borders would be closed there, so they decided to relocate back to Khabib’s home of Dagestan, Russia.
With Khabib Nurmagomedov now unable to travel, Tony Ferguson is left without an opponent for his scheduled fight at UFC 249. UFC president Dana White assured the media and fans that the event will go on no matter what and that a location has been secured, but not revealed to the media. Early reports are now noting that matchup between number four ranked lightweight contender Justin Gaethje and Ferguson could be in the works.
Tony Ferguson, per sources, has been offered a fight [at UFC 249] against top contender Justin Gaethje, however, that fight has not been agreed upon nor finalized. Neither has a location for the event.
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) March 30, 2020
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