UFC's current official broadcast partner ESPN revealed the details of the first UFC event of the year to take place in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates' capital. ESPN announced that UFC Fight Island 7 will be aired live on ABC.
It is the first time that ABC will air a UFC event. The promotion has not been aired live on network TV channels since UFC on FOX 31, on the last day of 2018.
The event's preliminary card live coverage will be broadcast exclusively on ESPN+, while the main card will follow airing on ESPN+ and ABC.
The triple-header fight week occurring at Yas Island will have two other events happening a few days after UFC Fight Island 7. UFC welterweight Michael Chiesa will face Neil Magny on January 20. The event will air on ESPN, ESPN Deportes, and ESPN+.
The month's main UFC event will take place three days later when former two-division champion Conor McGregor enters the octagon once again with Dustin Poirier in UFC 257, and it will be streamed exclusively on ESPN+ pay-per-view.
UFC and network TV
UFC Fight Island 7 will be the first event aired on ABC, and the first on any network TV since UFC's previous deal with FOX ran out. Since then, the promotion has only held events with its new partner ESPN.
FOX was the home of 31 live UFC events over seven years. The first event featured a heavyweight title fight between Cain Velazquez - then the division's champion- against Junior dos Santos. UFC on FOX 31, the last, was on air on December 31, 2018.
UFC Fight Night: Holloway vs. Kattar
UFC Fight Island 7 main event will have Max Holloway - current number one featherweight contender - facing Calvin Kattar, who occupies the sixth place in the featherweight UFC rankings.
Holloway is a former UFC featherweight champion, losing his belt to Alexander Volkanovski in UFC 245. Kattar comes with a record of 22 wins and only four losses, eyeing to enter the division's top five.
This is the current UFC Fight Island fight card at the time of writing:
Max Holloway vs. Calvin Kattar (featherweight)
Brian Kelleher vs. Ricky Simon (featherweight)
Julianna Pena vs. Sara McMann (women's bantamweight)
Mike Grundy vs. Nik Lentz (featherweight)
Santiago Ponzinibbio vs. Muslim Salikhov (welterweight)
Carlos Felipe vs. Justin Tafa (heavyweight)
Dusko Todorovic vs. Punahele Soriano (middleweight)
Omari Akhmedov vs. Tom Breese (middleweight)
Austin Lingo vs. Jacob Kilburn (featherweight)
Anthony Hernandez vs. Rodolfo Vieira (middleweight)
Wu Yanan vs. Bethe Correia (women's bantamweight)
Warlley Alves vs. Christian Aguilera (welterweight)
David Zawada vs. Ramazan Emeev (welterweight)