Following Paris Debut, UFC Senior VP David Shaw Says Goal Is to Resume Normal International Schedule in 2023

Paris, France — After a successful debut in France, the UFC is hoping to return to their regular road schedule next year, at least in terms of international events.

UFC Senior VP of International and Content, David Shaw, confirmed the news to Cageside Press and other media outlets following UFC Paris on Saturday night, at the Accor Arena in the French capital.

“Very likely,” Shaw answered when asked by Cageside Press what the likelihood of additional European markets beyond England and France being visited next year was. “I think the plan for 2023 is to try to get back to pre-COVID levels in terms of the number of international events we’re having. So we’ll get back to Abu Dhabi, obviously we’re going to be there in a couple of months [for UFC 280]. But we’ll be there in ’23, London, France, we need to get back to Scandinavia, we’ve been talking about going to Germany, even Spain. There’s a number of different countries we want to get to.”

That number will be maxed out by the 42 total events the promotion hold annually, and by how UFC shows are divvied up between regions of the globe — with Brazil, the U.S., Canada, and other territories generally getting a set number.

“Our goal is to try to get to at least one new country next year, at least one that we haven’t been to since COVID, but we’re still in those plan/development stages at the moment.”

Asked if Italy was a possible destination, given the strong support Alessio Di Chirico and Marvin Vettori had behind them Saturday at UFC Paris, Shaw said it was, but a location to host an Italian event needed to be secured.

“Yeah absolutely. The challenge with us is finding the appropriate venue,” the UFC exec explained. “We haven’t really determined where that would be at the moment. But we’d love to, honestly. We’d love to.”

On the Canadian front, the UFC is hoping to get back to the Great White North soon. Traditionally, the promotion visited its northern neighbour three times a year, but has not been since prior to COVID-19.

“We’re trying to get to Canada as soon as we can. Toronto’s typically a Pay-Per-View market, as is Edmonton, maybe Calgary,” noted Shaw. “Pay-Per-Views are hard to come by, then you try to line those up with availability of dates at the arenas that we need to get to across Canada.”

“We’re hoping to get back to Canada three times, as I mentioned to get to sort of pre-COVID event levels, that sort of allocation between the different regions around the world. We need to get back there very soon.”

Watch the full UFC Paris post-fight press conference with David Shaw above.