Despite Dana White's insistence that Joe Rogan will be calling the fights at UFC 249, Rogan himself said that he's not sure what he'll be doing on fight night on April 18.
Speaking on his hugely successful podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience, Rogan said that he knows little to nothing about the upcoming event.
"I’m trying to figure out what I’m doing – if I’m going to it or not," he said.
"I don’t know where it is. I don’t even know if it’s in America. I literally, as of right now, I don’t know sh*t. I have no information."
The topic of Dana White's revelation that he had secured a private island to host future events was also discussed, with Rogan likening it to a legendary Bruce Lee martial arts movie.
"Fight Island. They’re gonna buy an island. Yes, like Enter the Dragon!"
While UFC president White has been bullish in his insistence that the event go ahead, and has openly criticized the media in the lead-up to the event, Rogan has not been as forthright in his backing of the show going ahead.
He had a long and detailed discussion with infectious disease expert Michael Osterholm a few weeks ago where the seriousness of COVID-19 was laid out in clear terms, and he has since spoken on multiple occasions about the coronavirus situation.
So when his guest Lex Fridman suggested the event could be held with social distancing measures in place, Rogan quickly interjected.
"There’s no social distancing in a f*cking cage fight," said Rogan.
"They’re on top of each other sweating in each other’s mouths. If Tony Ferguson's fighting, there’s gonna be blood, for sure. Everybody that fights Tony Ferguson looks like they fell off a train, so there’s gonna be blood."
Rogan then laid out the crux of the argument against hosting the event.
"What if one of those guys test positive?" he asked.
"What if Justin Gaethje tests positive? He’s supposed to be fighting Ferguson. I have a feeling that if someone did test positive, they would kick them off the card. I shouldn’t say kick them off the card, remove them from the card. I would imagine it has to be the right thing to do. Then you would also have to quarantine the people that worked with him in training camp and test everybody."
Despite these concerns, UFC 249 looks set to go ahead, with or without Rogan. It will already move on without one of its main event stars, with UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov stuck in Dagestan due to Russia's current travel restrictions.
Rogan said he'd love to eventually see Nurmagomedov and his oft-booked opponent Tony Ferguson finally meet inside the octagon, but Khabib's replacement at UFC 249, Justin Gaethje, could scupper those plans by defeating Ferguson on April 18 and moving on to face the Russian world champion instead.
"Who knows, man?" Rogan admitted.
"Not if something happens this weekend. Justin Gaethje's a monster – he’s a monster. He’s a terrifying individual. In a sport that’s violent – it’s an inherently violent sport – he stands out as the most violent.
"Do you know how crazy that is? You watch his knockout of Edson Barboza. You watch how that motherf*cker attacks people. There’s a reckless abandon to his calculated wildness that is terrifying.
"He’s something special and he’s (getting) better all the time."Also on rt.com UFC 249 to take place on TRIBAL LAND in California to circumvent lockdown laws - reports