Dana White & Renzo Gracie

So much for that warm-up fight Renzo Gracie was talking about. All signs are now pointing at the Matt Hughes-Renzo Gracie showdown taking place at UFC 112 in Abu Dhabi.

When Dana White was asked Thursday if the Hughes-Gracie bout would he held in Abu Dhabi –- a location White recently scouted himself –- the UFC President answered cryptically.

“Sounds good to me,” he said, smiling broadly.

The fact that Sheik Tahnoon, of the Abu Dhabi Royal Family, is a Renzo Gracie black belt, along with White’s own statements on the promotion’s desire to hold an event in the United Arab Emirate’s capital, all point to the UFC’s Middle Eastern debut with this headlining bout.

Renzo may not be getting the tune-up he hoped for, but he’ll have plenty of opportunities for easier fights after Hughes. He signed a six-fight deal practically guaranteeing his last professional fight will be fought in the UFC.

Update: Matt Hughes has confirmed the Gracie for Abu Dhabi. UFC 112 is expected to take place on April 10, 2010.