Bellator MMA could finally be restarting its event schedule later this month.
Sherdog reports that the promotion is looking at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut to host a July 24th card. Initially, it looked like Bellator and Showtime Boxing would both return to California and run shows inside a television studio, but Showtime hasn’t announced its return and the dramatic rise in COVID-19 cases in California may very well have affected plans to have combat sports take place in the state.
The last US-based Bellator show took place on February 21st in Thackerville, Oklahoma. One day later they held an event in Dublin, Ireland. As the COVID-19 pandemic sparked sports league suspensions and shutdowns across the United States and around the world, Bellator scrapped its March 13th show in Uncasville on fight day due to safety concerns. Scott Coker confirmed that all personnel were compensated, and from that moment onward Bellator has been on pause.
According to the Sherdog article, Bellator “must have its COVID-19 safety protocols approved by the Mohegan Tribe Department of Regulation” in order to proceed with its event. Connecticut has had considerable recent success in dealing with COVID-19, with daily cases dropping substantially from April, along with positive test rates.
It is unknown what fights are targeted for this card. Notable cancelled matchups as a result of COVID-19 include Gegard Mousasi vs. Douglas Lima, Ryan Bader vs. Vadim Nemkov, Benson Henderson vs. Michael Chandler, Patricio Pitbull vs. Pedro Carvalho, and AJ McKee vs. Darrion Caldwell.