United Nations conference may change date of Anderson Silva - Chael Sonnen IIPosted on April 15, 2012, 02:27 PM by Mike Drahota
The absolute barrage of news centering around UFC President Dana White continues today with the announcement that the UFC 147 battle between Anderson Silva and Chael Sonnen may have to be moved to a different date. The possible date change comes due to a meeting of the United Nations in Rio that week, which could cause major planning conflicts and confusion. White is no doubt working vehemently with officials in Rio de Janeiro to get a set date, and was quoted:
“We’re working on it, it’s still a work in progress. We’re working through it trying to figure this whole thing out, The problem is, they don’t like the idea of us coming the same time this United Nations convention is going on. I think it’s a huge sporting event, I think people will come to Rio from all over the world. I think we’re going to need hotel rooms. Hopefully, we’ll get this thing done in the next few days – one way or the other.” - via 5thround.com
Obviously the main event of UFC 147 is one of, if not the biggest, fights in MMA this year. The UN conference, focusing on sustainable development, is scheduled from June 20-22 and is expected to hosts thousands of visitors. While other locations such as Sao Paulo and Manaus were listed as possible replacements, White said that ultimately the fight must take place in Rio. He is looking to get the date pushed to within a week before or after the conference, and believes that it will be absolutely necessary to secure as much space as possible for the event:
“The other problem is hotel rooms. Most of the hotel rooms are being taken up. And we don’t think, we know that the Anderson Silva-Chael Sonnen fight is one of the biggest sporting events this year, in the world.”
With hype building towards this monumental rematch, the UFC finds itself clamoring to find a set date for the event. For now UFC 147 is set to be held at Engenhao in Rio de Janeiro. Work will be done to reconfigure the stadium that normally holds 47,000 spectators in order to threaten the UFC's all-time attendance record of 55,724 fans. Now all Dana White needs is a date.
Photo: Francis Specker