UFC 147 Relocated to Belo Horizonte in Minas Gerais, Brazil
Well at least that's settled.
The event was originally supposed to take place in Sao Paulo, but was relocated to Rio de Janeiro. While this change was met with widespread enthusiasm—largely because UFC 147 was poised to become the largest MMA event in history—that darn United Nations swooped in and snatched up all of Rio's hotel rooms the same weekend the fights were supposed to happen.
Rather than compete with the UN for the city's attention, the Zuffa decided to bow out and take the show on the road.
The move to Belo Horizonte means that Brazil will get to keep the event in country, but the preservation of UFC 147 came too late to salvage the Anderson Silva-Chael Sonnen main event, which has been pushed back to UFC 148.
As of now, the card has three confirmed bouts—Milton Vieira vs Felipe Arantes, Fabricio Werdum vs Mike Russow and Vitor Belfort vs Wanderlei Silva. The TUF Brazil championship fight is expected to happen at UFC 147 as well.
Whether or not Belfort-Silva will function as the night's main event remains to be seen, but the card as a whole needs to be filled out before June 23.
It will be nearly impossible for the promotion to garner the interest they were originally hoping for without Silva-Sonnen on the card, and these lowered expectations are reflected in the venue choice for the show.
UFC 147 will happen at Journalist Felippe Drummond Stadium, which fits about 14,000 people.
Easier to fill than a soccer stadium, yes. But also less fun to fill.
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