The UFC’s inaugural Fight Island show went down Saturday night. UFC 251 boasted a trio of title fights, at welterweight, featherweight, and bantamweight. Not to mention some big names like Volkan Oezdemir, Rose Namajunas, and Paige VanZant.
Even newcomer Jiri Prochazka has plenty of hype behind him — and plenty of eyes on him.
Of course, it was the main event people were talking about. The welterweight title fight between Kamaru Usman and Jorge Masvidal. A fight Masvidal declined during a dispute with the promotion over pay. But when Gilbert Burns was pulled from the card following a positive test for COVID-19, it was “Gamebred” the UFC turned to. The longtime veteran then found himself with a new contract, and the biggest fight of his life. Halfway around the world in Abu Dhabi, on six days notice.
That alone saw fan interest explode. Masvidal was a budding star after his annihilation of Ben Askren at UFC 239, that after a knockout of Darren Till. He hit the mainstream thanks to the “BMF” title fight against Nate Diaz at UFC 244 last November. But how would he fare against the wrestling of “The Nigerian Nightmare?” Kamaru Usman had been perfect in the UFC to date, a daunting challenge to overcome on short notice.
We’d find out Saturday night.
Following the event, tune in for the UFC 251: Usman vs. Masvidal post-fight press conference. You can find the live stream above!