UFC is planning for their January 16th event to air on American TV network ABC, per reports. First reported by Twitter account @DonKingLV and later confirmed by Mike Heck and Damon Martin of MMA Fighting, the card will be UFC’s first on the network.
Since UFC’s move to the ESPN network in 2019, live event programming has primarily aired on ESPN and streaming service ESPN+.
ESPN+ will carry the January 16th event as well in a simulcast with the network.
The event will be their first live event on a network channel since moving from their Fox partnership. UFC’s television deal with Fox saw their programs mostly land on Fox Sports, although over a dozen events also aired on the network’s main channel.
Being on the same network as ESPN, ABC has had access to sports events.
ABC and ESPN provided 13-hour coverage of the NBA on Christmas Day, broadcasting matchups on a day that is heavily promoted and viewed by the basketball league.
ABC is scheduled to do a simulcast with ESPN on Sunday, airing an NFL Wild Card game between the Baltimore Ravens and Tennessee Titans.
The majority of ABC’s current programming is either live news-focused shows, comedy or dramas.
While hosting afternoon shows like Good Morning America or The View, ABC brings in prime time and late-night viewership with shows like 20/20, The Bachelor/Bachelorette, and Jimmy Kimmel Live.
UFC’s January 16th card is currently scheduled to include a featherweight main event between former champion Max Holloway and Calvin Kattar. The event is expected to happen at “Fight Island” in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.