by Damon Martin – MMAWeekly.com
Poor ticket sales have led the UFC to move the August 1 event originally scheduled to take place in Salt Lake City, UT to be relocated to San Diego, as announced by the promotion on Monday.
The event dubbed UFC on Versus 2 was the first ever event for the organization in Salt Lake City, but now plans have changed and San Diego will get the event instead.
The move to San Diego was originally reported by Heavy.com earlier on Monday.
“Our television ratings in Salt Lake City have always been strong, and when we finally found the opportunity to bring a UFC event there with a great card, I was very surprised and disappointed in ticket sales. As a result, for the first time in UFC history, I decided to pull the plug and move this August 1st event to the San Diego Sports Arena,” said UFC President Dana White.
Tickets for the event now in San Diego will go on sale June 19 at 10 a.m., while fans that purchased tickets for the show in Salt Lake City will be issued a full refund.
Speculation about the troubled ticket sales in Utah could stem from holding the event on a Sunday night. With a devout religious community in Utah, a Sunday night event may not have drawn the strongest numbers possible for the show.
Numbers in the Utah area for mixed martial arts have been strong in the past, including a show recently headlined by former UFC welterweight Josh Burkman that drew around 8,000 local fans for a Friday night show in April.
San Diego is also a strong MMA market with several fighters living and training in that area as well.
The card in August will be headlined by light heavyweights Jon “Bones” Jones against Vladimir Matyushenko, and will also broadcast live on the Versus network.