Three championship fights were announced for UFC 251, with the bantamweight, featherweight and welterweight belts on the line on the pay-per-view program on July 11th.
Shortly after proving himself to be the top contender in the 170-pound division, Gilbert Burns will challenge UFC Welterweight Champion Kamaru Usman on the show.
Also announced was that a rematch between Max Holloway and Alexander Volkanovski will happen. The matchup is a rematch from December when Holloway lost his 145-pound belt via decision.
Crowning a champion and ending the short-lived vacancy of the bantamweight championship, Petr Yan and Jose Aldo will compete for the UFC Bantamweight Championship on the show.
The fight was announced by UFC President Dana White on Tuesday, as he went on ESPN program “The First Take.”
More Details on Fight Island
The show will be the first of four events UFC plans to hold at “Fight Island,” a location that has now been unveiled as Yas Island in Abu Dhabi.
The following events in Abu Dhabi are scheduled to be on July 15th, 18th and 25th.
“10 square miles will just be inhabited by us. It’ll include an arena, hotels, training facilities for the fighters that are private so that the whole COVID-19 thing is covered, dining establishments, and yes, there is an octagon on the beach,” said White, UFC President on Tuesday.
Smaller Bouts Announced For UFC 251
While announcing three championship matchups, White also unveiled some smaller bouts for UFC 251.
Jessica Andrade will face Rose Namajunas on the show, a rematch which was set to happen earlier in the year but got cancelled. In their first meeting, Andrade won the UFC Strawweight Championship off of Namajunas, stopping her with a slam.
Rising flyweight contender Amanda Ribas will get a crack at longtime UFC fighter Paige Vanzant on the card as well.
On Monday, news broke that former RIZIN Light Heavyweight Champion will make his UFC debut on the show, fighting Volkan Oezdemir. The matchup, without a date attached, was first reported in April by Mike Skytte, but reported by Brett Okamoto on Monday with a date attached.
The earliest known matchup on the card is Frankie Edgar fighting Pedro Munhoz, which was first reported by Guilherme Cruz and Damon Martin of MMA Fighting in May.
Here’s the entire card so far.
Bout 7: Kamaru Usman (16-1) vs. Gilbert Burns (19-3) (UFC Welterweight Championship)
Bout 6: Alexander Volkanovski (21-1) vs. Max Holloway (21-5) (UFC Featherweight Championship)
Bout 5: Petr Yan (14-1) vs. Jose Aldo (28-6) (Vacant UFC Bantamweight Championship)
Bout 4: Jessica Andrade (20-7) vs. Rose Namajunas (8-4) (Strawweight)
Bout 3: Pedro Munhoz (18-4) vs. Frankie Edgar (23-8-1) (Bantamweight)
Bout 2: Paige VanZant (8-4) vs. Amanda Ribas (9-1) (Flyweight)
Bout 1: Volkan Oezdemir (17-4) vs. Jiri Prochazka (26-3-1) (Light Heavyweight)