We unfortunately begin this article with some tragic news from the world of Bellator MMA:
Isiah Chapman (9-4), who competed in Bellator MMA as a Bantamweight, was shot outside of his Akron, OH home Tuesday night and passed away at the hospital.
He was 30 years old.
WJW FOX 8 in Cleveland reports that the killer, 29-year-old Christopher Blouir, was arrested on one count of murder Wednesday night.
You can read more about this story here:
All of us at Armchair Media Network would like to express our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Isiah Chapman as well as the Bellator MMA family.
Onward to today’s topic:
It looks like the return of mixed martial arts, as well as the return of live sporting events as a whole, will have to wait for another day.
Thursday, UFC President Dana White suddenly changed his plans and announced the cancellation of the scheduled April 18 UFC 249 pay-per-view, along with subsequent UFC cards.
White’s move comes after receiving phone calls from executives at both The Walt Disney Company and ESPN about the UFC’s plans for the April pay-per-view, telling ESPN’s Brett Okamoto:
“Today, we got a call from the highest level executive at Disney, and the highest level at ESPN… and the powers that be there asked me to stand down and not do this event on Saturday.”
UFC President Dana White spoke to Brett Okamoto about #UFC249 no longer taking place on April 18.
ESPN has been the UFC’s United States television and streaming media partner since last year and broadcasts UFC pay-per-views through its ESPN+ subscription-based streaming service.
Initially, UFC 249 was to have been held at Barclays Center in New York City and feature Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Tony Ferguson in a Lightweight championship main event.
This pairing fell apart for the fifth time when Nurmagomedov withdrew from the card due to travel restrictions in his home country of Russia.
Tony Ferguson was rebooked to fight Justin Gaethje in the headliner before the card was canceled entirely.
UFC 249’s co-main event was to have featured Rose Namajunas vs. Jessica Andrade in a Strawweight fight.
Namajunas withdrew on Wednesday after the deaths of two family members due to the novel coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19), according to manager Brian Butler.
White promised that Tachi Palace Casino Resort, the alternate location for UFC 249, will be shortlisted for a future UFC show, saying:
“… Tachi Palace in California, the Indian reservation, has had our back this whole time, has stood their ground, and was willing to do this fight. And let me tell you this: When the world gets back to normal, California, that [fight] will be at Tachi Palace.”
Stay safe and stay healthy, everybody.
Gambling this season? Want to try it just to see what it feels like? Go to MyBookie.ag and use promo code ARMCHAIR25 at checkout. They will match your deposit dollar for dollar. Putting in $100? You’ll now have $200.