Sadly, it was bound to happen. The latest disease running amok on our planet, the coronavirus; has cost many lives. That by far is more upsetting than it's most recent consequence.
The disease that started in Asia already played havoc with ONE Championship's pocketbook. The card in Singapore on February 28th went on, but it was dark. There was no audience in attendance. CEO Chatri Sityodtong and his team discussed dropping the card altogether and decided against that plan. It was just fighters, corners, and broadcasters; as there was still commentary.
As the disease has spread even more; it's come to bite them yet again. This time the One Championship management team has decided to pull the card on March 20th in Vietnam. The entire team was in constant talks with the government realizing for the safety of fighters, staff, and the public, to just drop it for now.
The card, providing things get better, will be moved to June 26th. With this move the next card will be April 8th; once again pending the world health situation. ONE Infinity 1 is highlighted by unification of their flyweight belt. Champion Adriano Moraes takes on Grand Prix Champ Demetrious Johnson; as Mighty Mouse looks to grab the official strap.
It's a bittersweet day for Chatri as he also announced that at the end of next week he will be making a huge announcement. They may finally come to North America, something the organization has always wanted to do.
ONE isn't the only one getting KO'd by the virus as of now. ARES FC has been forced to move their April 3rd card to October 30. Both organizations are allowing fans to either keep their tickets for the later dates or get full refunds. With countless local promotions around the globe and even the big boys; one can assume if things don't get better fast, more arena's will go empty.
ARES 2 was going to go down in Brussels. The UFC had to move Weili Zhang around the globe a couple of times in her prep to fight Joanna Jedrzejczyk this Saturday. With well more than 100,000 cases around the globe right now; it's anyone's guess what will happen next. Usually, it is "sport" that helps soothe the mind of the public in hard times. However, in this case, even "sport" is very much affected and vulnerable. Here is to hoping now more than ever for a cure to get us all back on the right track.