UFC Hits Calgary for Special Wednesday Press Conference

Dana White

UFC 149 reportedly headed to city in July

The UFC will hold a news conference Wednesday in Calgaray, Alberta, Canada, presumably to announce a summer event in the city.

The promotion announced that UFC president Dana White and director of Canadian operations Tom Wright will host a press conference at Flames Central in downtown Calgaray. The event will be open to the public with doors at 11:30 a.m. Mountain time. The press conference is scheduled to begin at noon locally (2 p.m. Eastern).

The rumored reason for the news conference is to announce a UFC event in the city, reportedly UFC 149 on July 21. The UFC will also host an open workout on Thursday at BDB Martial Arts in Calgary. That event is open to the public at 11 a.m. local time and will feature UFC middleweights Jason MacDonald and Nick Ring, lightweight Mitch Clarke and Eric Fraser and Corey Mace of the Calgary Stampeders Canadian Football League team.

A UFC event in Calgary would be the first in that city, which has a population of more than 1 million, making it the third largest city in Canada behind Toronto and Montreal. The event would also be the first UFC show in the province of Alberta – though the WEC, under the Zuffa banner before it was merged into the UFC, held WEC 49 in Edmonton, about three hours north of Calgary in Alberta.

The targeted venue for the event reportedly is the Scotiabank Saddledome, an arena that seats nearly 20,000 for NHL games as the home of the Calgary Flames, who have played in the arena since its opening in 1983. The venue also hosted ice hockey and other events during the 1988 Winter Olympics, which took place in Calgary.

The UFC was scheduled to hold an event this Saturday in Montreal, but that show was ultimately changed to UFC 145 next month in Atlanta. The UFC held three events in Canada in 2011 – UFC 129 in Toronto, 131 in Vancouver and UFC 140 in Toronto. UFC 129 set a North American record for gate and attendance with more than 55,000 fans filling the Rogers Centre for a gate north of $11 million. UFC 140 in December was held at the Air Canada Centre. The UFC has held four events in Montreal (UFC 83, UFC 97, UFC 113 and UFC 124) and one other (UFC 115) in Vancouver.