UFC 249 fight card, odds, date, rumors, location: Tony Ferguson vs. Justin Gaethje to headline PPV event

UFC is ready to return to action as one of the first sporting organizations to hold events amid the global pandemic on May 9 from Jacksonville, Florida. President Dana White attempted to host UFC 249 on April 18 as originally planned but was told to “stand down” by Disney and ESPN executives when he moved the event to California. Amid the chaos, two title fights top the marquee. 

Tony Ferguson and Justin Gaethje will headline this event in front of an empty VyStar Memorial Arena with the inteirm lightweight title on the line. Ferguson was originally scheduled to take on full champ Khabib Nurmagomedov, but “The Eagle” returned to Russia amid the pandemic and is unable to travel back to the U.S.

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In the co-main event, bantamweight champion Henry Cejudo will battle former strapholder Dominick Cruz. It will be Cruz’s first action inside the Octagon in four years after losing his title to Cody Garbrandt in 2016. This will also be Cejudo’s first defense of the belt after he was originally scheduled to take on Jose Aldo at UFC 250 in Brazil. Aldo is unable to leave his home country for the bout.

There were rumors that a third title fight could be on the way for this loaded card as two-division champ Amanda Nunes and Felicia Spencer “verbally agreed” to a title bout at 145 pounds, according to reports. However, in an interview with CBS Sports last week, Nunes said she wouldn’t be fighting and that she wanted a full training camp to prepare for Spencer. “The Lioness” has yet to defend her 145-pound title since capturing it over Cris Cyborg in December 2018.

In addition to two title fights, UFC loaded up this card with all-action stars, most notably heavyweight contenders Francis Ngannou and Jair Rozenstruik. Both come into this bout off of impressive knockout stretches and looking to get into the title conversation. Plus, fan favorites Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone and Anthony Pettis throw down in a rematch seven years in the making.

The action all goes down on Saturday, May 9 and will air on ESPN+ pay-per-view. The card as it currently stands is as follows:

UFC 249 fight card

  • Tony Ferguson -180 vs. Justin Gaethje +155 — Interim lightweight title
  • Henry Cejudo (c) -220 vs. Dominick Cruz +180 — bantamweight title
  • Francis Ngannou -260 vs. Jair Rozenstruik +210 — Heavyweights
  • Calvin Kattar -240 vs. Jeremy Stephens +200 — Featherweights
  • Greg Hardy -195 vs. Yorgan De Castro +165 — Heavyweights
  • Anthony Pettis -150 vs. Donald Cerrone +125 — Welterweights
  • Vicente Luque -270 vs. Niko Price +220 — Welterweights
  • Fabricio Werdum -300 vs. Aleksei Oleinik +240 — Heavyweights
  • Ronaldo Souza -125 vs. Uriah Hall +105 — Middleweights
  • Carla Esparza -160 vs. Michelle Waterson +135 — Women’s strawweights
  • Bryce Mitchell -180 vs. Charles Rosa +155 — Featherweights
  • Ryan Spann -420 vs. Sam Alvey +330 — Light heavyweights

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