UFC 97 Saved
Report: UFC 97 is saved, will go on as planned in Montreal
by MMAjunkie.com Staff on Feb 18, 2009 at 12:45 pm ET
A UFC 97 event planned for the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, has reportedly been saved.
Lat week Canadian officials said the UFC could not conduct the April 18 "UFC 97: Redemption" card with the UFC's current rules.
However, according to corussports.com, a French-language website that has covered the series of events, the UFC will prohibit foot stomps at the commission's request, but elbow and knee strikes will not be banned for the upcoming pay-per-view show.
Réjean Thériault, the communications director for the Régie des alcools, des courses et des jeux, which governs alcohol, racing, gambling and combat sports in Quebec, initially stated the UFC's use of elbows and knees to the head do not currently fall in line with the commission's policies.
The commission's current policies only apply to boxing, kickboxing and something called "mixed boxing" that does not include MMA. The policies do not provide regulations on the use of a cage.
The commission's stance was especially confusing since representatives said the commission was unaware that UFC 83, attended by more than 21,000 people and generating $5.1 million in ticket sales, took place in Montreal in 2008.
UFC officials Lorenzo Fertitta and Marc Ratner met with the Canadian officials on Tuesday and apparently hashed out a deal.
As a back-up plan, the organization began making preparations for a possible move to the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas for UFC 97, Yahoo! Sports' Kevin Iole reported Tuesday.
UFC 97 features a main event between UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva and challenger Thales Leites, and former UFC light-heavyweight champion Chuck Liddell takes on Mauricio "Shogun' Rua in the co-main event.