Bellator MMA on Tuesday canceled its upcoming event slated for June 6 in Chicago.
Officials for the promotion had been planning a rather significant event for its return to Chicago. Former lightweight champion Michael Chandler was set to rematch former UFC and WEC lightweight titleholder Benson Henderson in the main event. Chandler defeated Henderson in their first meeting at Bellator 165 on Nov. 19, 2016, via split decision.
Slated for Wintrust Arena and set to air on streaming partner DAZN, Bellator 244 was also expected to feature undefeated featherweight star AJ McKee versus former bantamweight champion Darion Caldwell in the semifinal round of the Bellator Featherweight World Grand Prix. Currently 16-0, McKee was looking to move past the former champ to get his shot at Bellator gold.
Bellator 244 is the promotion’s fifth event to be canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.
After holding weigh-ins the previous day, Bellator 241 was canceled on the day of the event on March 13. Bellator officials moved swiftly to cancel Bellator 242, Bellator London, and Bellator 243.
Officials hope to reschedule the Bellator 244 event, although it is sure to under significant re-shuffling, as are most fight cards that have been canceled because of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Statement on Bellator 244 cancellation:
Due to the ongoing safety concerns surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak, as well as current federal, state and local government mandates, Bellator MMA officials today have announced that Bellator 244, originally scheduled to take place on June 6 at Wintrust Arena in Chicago, Ill., has been postponed.
The organization will continue to monitor the situation closely and fully intends to reschedule the event as soon as possible.
As always, the health and safety of our athletes, fans, partners and staff remains our top priority. We appreciate the understanding and patience of everyone involved during this incredibly difficult time.