UFC president Dana White doesn’t expect a live crowd for his events anytime soon.

The UFC hasn’t held an event since UFC Brasilia took place March 14 amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. That card notably didn’t have a live crowd and when the promotion resumes its fight schedule starting with UFC 249 on May 9, it will remain that way.

And White is completely fine with that:

“Obviously, the world is going to be different and I’ve been thinking far ahead into the future,” White told Yahoo. “I don’t expect to have a gate for a very long time. I’ve already thrown that out the window. You have to look at all the different things. People think that I don’t take this seriously because I want to come back so fast and all this other stuff.

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“It’s not that I don’t take it seriously. I take it very seriously. I don’t plan on having a gate for a very long time. … I’m already thinking way ahead of these types of things. All I need to worry about is making sure everybody is safe and I can put on these events. I don’t need a crowd.”

It’s a small price to pay for getting things back to normal during these unprecedented times.

White has always maintained that the UFC will be the first major organization to resume sporting events and it looks like he will deliver on that promise next month. It won’t be easy or cheap for that matter, but the UFC head honcho believes someone has to take the first step.

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“At some point, we have to figure out, ‘How do we get things back to normal,’ but do it in a really safe way,” White said. “The only way to find out is to get out there and start doing it.

“We’re going to spend a lot of money. It’s not going to be cheap. It’s going to be expensive. You’re worried about the health and safety of everybody: The health and safety of the fighters, the commission, the referees, my staff that’s going to be there. It’s not cheap. It’s expensive. It’s hard, but somebody’s got to take the first step and get out there.”

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Experienced freelance sports writer covering mixed martial arts (MMA) extensively for the last few years. Likes a good body shot.