The UFC’s first event of the year will now be known as UFC On ABC 1: Holloway vs. Kattar after it was revealed the January 16th show will be broadcast on the ABC Network from Fight Island, Abu Dhabi.
It should be noted that the main card will also be broadcast simultaneously on ESPN+ at an earlier-than-usual 3pm ET (8pm UK) starting time, while ESPN+ will also exclusively air the prelims starting at 12pm ET (5pm UK).
This will be the UFC’s first show on network television since their final UFC On FOX 31 event back in 2018, and it’ll be their first ever appearance on ABC, which like ESPN is owned by Disney.
The switch-up comes at a time when ABC is on a high, having recently beaten of competition from the likes of FOX and NBC to be declared the most watched entertainment network in total viewers (excluding sports and breaking news) for the first time in over 20 years.
The return to network television marks the first of three events in the space of eight days for the UFC to kick off their 2021 schedule and gives them a good opportunity to heavily promote their first pay-per-view of the year, UFC 257 on January 23rd, which of course features a blockbuster main event rematch between Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier.