The UFC and ESPN officially will usher in the next broadcast era in MMA next week.
After seven years with FOX as its broadcast partner, the UFC shifts to ESPN and its series of networks, which includes the ESPN+ online streaming platform.
UFC on ESPN+ 1, which takes place next Saturday, Jan. 19, at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The main card streams on ESPN+ following prelims on ESPN and ESPN+. In the main event, UFC bantamweight champ T.J. Dillashaw (16-3 MMA, 12-3 UFC) drops down 10 pounds to challenge for a second concurrent title against flyweight champ Henry Cejudo (13-2 MMA, 7-2 UFC) in a highly anticipated superfight.
Ahead of the big card in Brooklyn, ESPN is rolling out a special three-hour block of programming Saturday night, as well as more than 150 hours of UFC content on ESPN+.
Saturday, some of the biggest title fights in recent history will be replayed on ESPN. At 8 p.m. ET, the UFC 229 main event between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor will be aired. After that, at 9 p.m., the UFC 227 title fight between Cejudo and former champion Demetrious Johnson will air. And at 10 p.m., Dillashaw’s two bantamweight title fights against Cody Garbrandt will be featured.
In addition, ESPN+ now has online content like “UFC Reloaded,” “UFC 25 Greatest Fights,” “UFC Unleashed,” “UFC Fight Flashback,” “UFC Main Event” and the full event replay from UFC 229 this past October.
From ESPN’s descriptions of the programming:
- “UFC 25 Greatest Fights”: UFC counts down the greatest battles ever. See the iconic performances, shocking upsets and ruthless rivalries that turned athletes into legends.
- “UFC Reloaded”: UFC Reloaded gives fight fans a chance to re-visit (or watch for the first time) the biggest and most memorable UFC pay-per-view events in history.
- “UFC Main Event”: UFC Main Event showcases the best fights of recent vintage, set up by prefight, interview-driven features that reveal the backstories of the athletes just prior those epic bouts.
- “UFC Unleashed”: UFC Unleashed features the best fights from the UFC archives, all in one show. Unleashed brings you the big fights that you missed or want to see all over again.
- “UFC Fight Flashback”: UFC Fight Flashback is an enhanced replay of the biggest fights, featuring never-before-seen footage from state-of-the-art, specialty cameras and exclusive new sound. Beginning with arrivals at the arena, inside the locker rooms, in the Octagon, through the epic fight and the aftermath.
- “UFC Top 10”: UFC Top 10 is the ultimate countdown for action packed moments in UFC history. From thrilling momentum shifts to unexpected knockouts and submissions, it’s edge-of-your-seat action — relived by the fighters, coaches and commentators who were involved.
- UFC 229: Khabib vs. McGregor: The full replay of the 3-hour main event from the recent blockbuster PPV event, culminating in the fierce, emotional showdown between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor.
Launched in April 2018, ESPN+ is available at a cost of $4.99 per month after a seven-day free trial. Most of the UFC’s non-pay-per-view “Fight Night” events will be streamed in whole or part on the platform.
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Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie
Read the full article here: Ahead of Brooklyn card, ESPN airs three hours of UFC content – including Khabib-McGregor replay