Skip to main content

UFC Fight Island: What Is It, and Where Is It?

Image used with permission by copyright holder

After briefly postponing future events in the spring of 2020 due to the coronavirus outbreak, UFC CEO Dana White wasted no time in getting the world’s biggest fighting league back up and running in a big way, promising that the UFC would be the first sport back in action and that he was preparing a private “Fight Island” as a venue for future fights. White quickly made good on the first promise, and the second one was finally fulfilled on January 23 of this year, when MMA all-star Conor McGregor returned to the Octagon to face Dustin Poirier in a rematch at UFC 257 — the first event to be held in the newly built Etihad Arena on Yas Island, United Arab Emirates.


The 2020 UFC schedule was briefly thrown into disarray in April of last year when the public health crisis caused Dana White to reluctantly put further fights on hold. That delay didn’t last long, however; UFC 249 happened about a month after its initial postponement, and the normal schedule has more or less continued steadily since then. However, it wasn’t until now that UFC Fight Island — which White hinted at last year — finally became fully operational, and UFC 257: Poirier vs. McGregor 2 was the first official show to take place at the new venue. A limited audience was be in attendance for the first time since last March.

UFC Fight Island is not actually an isolated island in itself, but is situated on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Yas Island is already home to many popular tourist attractions, and over the past several months, part of the isle has been completely transformed to build Etihad Arena, along with other facilities for fighters and staff to live and train. Previously, UFC events have been held at the Flash Forum on Yas Island, but UFC 257 was the first time that the UFC’s own newly built arena will be used for an event. UFC 257 was a fitting one to be the first for Etihad Arena on Fight Island, too, with MMA legend Conor McGregor returning to the Octagon to face Dustin Poirier in a highly anticipated rematch. There, McGregor suffered his first knockout loss in a second-round upset win for Poirier.

If you’re wondering how to live stream UFC without cable, then ESPN+ is a must. This premium streaming service is the best way to stream the live MMA events (along with replays, analysis, interviews, press conferences, and more) thanks to the sports broadcaster’s tight relationship with the UFC. ESPN+ is also the only venue for watching pay-per-view shows like UFC 260: Miocic vs. Ngannou on March 27.

Editors' Recommendations

Lucas Coll
Lucas Coll is a freelance commerce and affiliate writer for The Manual and our tech-focused brother site, Digital Trends…
Tempur-Pedic Mattress Sale: Save $500 on the Top Brand

If you're shopping for the best Tempur-Pedic mattress deals, your timing is excellent. Tempur-Pedic regularly scores first place in customer satisfaction with retail mattresses. Shoppers looking for mattress sales seek Tempur-Pedic mattress sales for the greatest savings on a mattress famous for delivering a good night's sleep. We scoured the internet for the best Tempur-Pedic mattress deals available today, and we're here to tell you all about why they're worth your time and money.

Mattress Sales Happening Today

Read more
This is what you need to know about top-secret UFC fighter contracts
With no union representation, the UFC retains lucrative rights
Isaac Moreno punches Henry Liu in the face during their mixed martial arts bout at the Strike Fight event at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., Dec. 8, 2012.

Since shooting past boxing in popularity in the early 2000s, the UFC has built a minted empire. A May 12 earnings call revealed that the Endeavor Group’s revenue from March 31, 2021, to April 1, 2022, passed $1 billion. This makes investors, entertainment groups, UFC president and promoter Dana White, and top-billing fighters very rich. For mixed martial art professionals, this comes at the cost of lower-level fighters and binding contracts.

Have you ever wondered what a UFC fighter's contract looks like? When an MMA competitor signs a contract to fight three to four annual fights, they give away representational rights. Instead of a union serving as an exclusive representative to collectively bargain with the UFC for wages, hours, and working conditions, each professional is on his or her own, operating essentially as an independent contractor. Under these agreements, fighters are obligated by the terms of contracts, no matter how onerous. And they have no recourse should they be summarily released.

Read more
Why You Need to Watch Undefeated Khamzat Chimaev Take on Nate Diaz at UFC 279
ufc 279 chimaev vs diaz teaser image

This Saturday, undefeated rising star Khamzat Chimaev is facing down MMA legend Nate Diaz in the Octagon at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. UFC 279: Chimaev vs. Diaz is the MMA league's big pay-per-view event for September, but it's fairly unique in that there are no championship belts on the line this time. Instead, the main event is a showdown between Diaz and Chimaev, two top-tier fighters on the UFC welterweight roster, with another welterweight bout between Li Jingliang and Tony Ferguson serving as the co-main. This isn't an event you'll want to miss, so read on to learn more about the fighters and how you can watch the UFC 279 live stream online this weekend.

Nate Diaz is a fighter who needs no introduction to fans of mixed martial arts. The 37-year-old southpaw has been fighting with the UFC since 2007 and currently holds a professional record of 20 wins and 13 losses. Although his record is not the most impressive at first glance and he has never held a mainline UFC championship, Diaz is a highly regarded fighter as well as a big fan favorite for his ability to go the distance in the Octagon. He most recently faced Leon Edwards at UFC 263 in June of last year, where a bloodied Diaz put on a great show but ultimately lost by unanimous decision.

Read more