Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) will wrap up a three-event week later tonight (Sat., May 16, 2020) with UFC on ESPN 8 live on ESPN and ESPN+ from inside VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Fla., as heavyweights Alistair Overeem and Walt Harris collide in the main event.
UFC on ESPN 8 will be the promotion’s third event in the past eight days, as UFC 249 went down last Saturday and UFC Jacksonville this past Wednesday. All three events took place from inside the same arena as UFC re-opens its doors during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
As the only major sports organization to return from quarantine UFC has been put under the spotlight over the past week. The promotion had a brief hiccup when Ronaldo Souza tested positive for coronavirus ahead of his UFC 249 clash with Uriah Hall, but for the most part the promotion’s return to action has gone down pretty seamlessly.
Conor McGregor, who has been watching UFC’s actions closely to see if current COVID-19 safety measures meet his own standards, sent words of support last weekend prior to UFC 249. Before tonight’s UFC on ESPN 8 event in Jacksonville, McGregor tweeted out the following message praising UFC for its efforts over the past week.
UFC on again tonight! Incredible!
3 shows in a week without a hitch.
Only the 1 team tested positive pre fight but was discovered before any risk of further contamination.
There is light at the end of this tunnel people!
Let’s go!! ❤️
— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) May 16, 2020
“UFC on again tonight! Incredible! 3 shows in a week without a hitch. Only the 1 team tested positive pre fight but was discovered before any risk of further contamination. There is light at the end of this tunnel people! For sports! For schools! For businesses! Let’s go!!”
There have been mixed emotions about UFC’s return this past week, but most of the fighters, coaches, and staff members involved seem good about the direction the promotion is going. According to UFC president Dana White, other sports organizations have even reached out to see exactly how the MMA juggernaut is able to host shows.
For now, things remain positive as UFC continues to stay busy and give sports fans something to cheer about. We’ll see what transpires later this evening when Overeem vs. Harris leads a jam-packed card on ESPN.
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC on ESPN 8 fight card blow, starting with the ESPN/ESPN+ “Prelims” undercard bouts at 6 p.m. ET, followed by the ESPN/ESPN+ main card start time at 9 p.m. ET.
For more news and notes on UFC on ESPN 8 click here.