It was a little unclear earlier this week where UFC 112 would be held with no obvious venue options in Abu Dhabi. However, it looks like the UFC has found a way to make it work, because Dave Meltzer is reporting that UFC 112 will indeed be held in Abu Dhabi on April 10 and will serve as the UFC’s first outdoor event.
The Ultimate Fighting Championship’s much-discussed debut in the Middle East is expected to be announced in one week.
“We’re going to have a big press conference in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday, with our new partners from the region, Flash,” said Marshall Zelaznik, the UFC’s managing director of international expansion. “[Zuffa CEO] Lorenzo [Fertitta] and myself will be there with some of the biggest names on the UFC roster. I don’t want to give away the official announcement, but this will be a very unique show and not just because the card itself will be as good as any in UFC history.”
The show is scheduled to be the first outdoor event in UFC history, as there is no suitable indoor arena for such an event.
Anderson Silva vs. Vitor Belfort, BJ Penn vs. Frankie Edgar and Matt Hughes vs. Renzo Gracie are all expected to be announced at the press conference.
It will be interesting to see what time they set the event at. With Silva and Penn headlining, the event will most certainly be on pay-per-view. Abu Dhabi is nine hours ahead of those of us on the east coast, so if they hold the event at 10PM Abu Dhabi time, that means a 1PM ET/10AM PT live start in the US. They can’t schedule it at the normal US start time like they’re doing with UFC 110 since that would actually be 7AM in Abu Dhabi. We may be looking at a tape-delayed pay-per-view with the option to buy it live. Not the biggest deal in the world, but it would kind of suck to have to watch such a big card so early in the day if your the type who insists on seeing it live.
Also, Cagewriter has confirmed that UFC 113 has been moved to May 8 on account of the rumored Mayweather-Mosley fight.
This afternoon, a UFC source told Cagewriter that UFC 113 was headed for May 8. This evening UFC president Dana White confirmed the date change. The switch was made possible when the Bell Centre was able to move a May 8 concert.
“We were trying to not go the same night as boxing but these [expletive] guys can’t get out of their own way,” White told Cagewriter. “I have never seen anything so unorganized, selfish and disfunctional as boxing. It’s a joke!”
I don’t always agree with Dana, but I second every single bit of what he just said.