Dana White On “Wacky” UFC On ESPN+34 COVID-19 Related Shakeups

Dana White has looked back on the COVID-19 related changes to the UFC On ESPN+ 34 card, which saw it be one of the smallest cards in recent memory. 

UFC On ESPN+ 34 took place on Saturday, September 5, 2020 from Las Vegas, Nevada at the UFC APEX. Alistair Overeem vs. Augusto Sakai in a heavyweight bout headlined the show. In the co-main event, Ovince Saint Preux vs. Alonzo Menifield in a light heavyweight bout took place. 

Dana White On UFC On ESPN+34

To highlight them, let’s break it down.  Julia Avila and Nicco Montano were rescheduled to Oct. 3 after Montano tested positive for COVID-19. Montana De La Rosa, Sijara Eubanks and Brian Kelleher all got new opponents for a variety of reasons. 

Fast forward to fight day, three fights were either no longer on the card, or completely changed.

At a press on Tuesday night, the UFC President gave his thoughts about the situation. 

“Look at the history here,” White told reporters backstage at the UFC APEX (H/T to MMA Fighting). “Look at what we’ve done and how it’s all worked out. One of the things that we’re not doing that other sports are doing is there’s people that keep testing positive but they have no symptoms and they’re not contagious. They’re letting those guys play, whether it’s the NBA or Major League Baseball. We’re not. That’s the difference.”

“We just had a situation last week where they tested negative, negative, then tested positive,” White explained. “This thing is f*ckin wacky and you do the best you can. We’re doing everything the right way and, who knows with this thing? Nobody has been able to get this thing figured out yet. We’ve been solid.”

“Think about me: I’ve been there, I shake their hands, I do all this other stuff and I haven’t had COVID,” White said. “I will shake people’s hands until the day I die.”

UFC On ESPN+ 34 Quick Results