Seef District, Bahrain – As we settle into the fourth month of the Coronavirus Pandemic, the repercussions of ill-judged decisions are now coming to a head.
One such ill-judged decision was the UFC adamantly trying to go ahead with their UFC 249 event in April.
Subsequently, it was due to the upcoming event that tied fighters into training at UFC training camps, including UFC active fighter Lyman Good who has just confirmed that he has tested positive for COVID19 and Lyman was scheduled to fight Belal Muhammad at the ill-fated UFC 249 originally scheduled for April 18 in Brooklyn.
Lyman withdrew from the bout several weeks ago, initially blaming an injury as the reason. But on Monday, Lyman revealed that he actually pulled out of the fight after testing positive for COVID-19.
Speaking to ESPN, Lyman was quoted saying “I said it was due to an injury, but it was actually because I had tested positive for COVID-19,” Lyman said. “As soon as I found out, I let everybody know. At first, I thought it was a cold But there was just one day where it was bad. My body wasn’t listening, it wasn’t responding the way it normally does to sparring.”
Lyman added both he and his girlfriend and a coach at his gym, tested positive for the virus.
“When I thought there was a possibility that I have it, I figured let me make sure if I have it or not. Also for the safety for my coaches – you know, my coach was showing up every morning to my training sessions – my teammates, my family, and everybody else. Really, what I held into account was the safety of others.”
“My real concern was my teammates, my coaches, and anyone I was exposed to,” Lyman continued. “God forbid they get it, they spread it, and someone else gets sick really bad. I would feel responsible.”
With this latest revelation, it further substantiates the call for regularity bodies within MMA as BRAVE CF president Mohammed Shahid has been calling for, for the last few years.
Shahid led the way as the only major organization promoter to speak against UFC’s plans, reiterating that MMA would only grow if the focus was the development of the sport, not money.
“It is our duty as representatives for the sport of MMA to move forward in a way that doesn’t put people’s health at risk. We need to set an example”, said Shahid, who is frustrated with MMA being misrepresented as a sport.
“Today we are being misrepresented as a sport because of decisions like this. We need to have stronger regulations and we need to collaborate as a sport. Decisions must be made with the well-being of people in mind, and not based on money”
And his opinions have been echoed by federations, sports governing bodies, health authorities and respected sports athletes.
The question now is, not why – but when can we expect to see MMA regulated?