- The Nevada State Athletic Commission has approved four UFC events for February 2021.
- The promotion will hold its first three events of 2021 at Yas Island in Abu Dhabi.
- UFC 258 on February 13th is expected to be headlined by Kamaru Usman vs Gilbert Burns.
Last year, UFC President Dana White declared that Abu Dhabi is the new “Fight Capital of the World”. And after successfully holding two Fight Island Series at Yas Island in 2020, the UFC is returning to its paradise location again for its first three events of 2021.
But while Fight Island has become a favorite venue for the UFC, there’s still no place like home. And for the UFC, home is its APEX Facility in Las Vegas, Nevada. With the other states in the U.S. still abiding by shutdowns or lockdowns, the UFC will be coming home next month.
NSAC Approves Four UFC Events
#UFC could return to Las Vegas after NSAC approves four events planned for February #MMA https://t.co/0TDbKGMWXZ pic.twitter.com/D98RGsNj1h
— MMA mania (@mmamania) January 14, 2021
According to a report from MMA Junkie, the Nevada State Athletic Commission has approved four February events for the UFC. The approval was granted during the commission’s monthly conference held on Wednesday via conference call with four of five commissioners present. The NSAC voted swiftly to approve UFC events on February 6, 13, 20, and 27 at the APEX Facility.
Fighting at the APEX though means that there will still be no fans allowed inside the venue. That has been the arrangement since last year, when the NSAC started permitting the UFC to hold events in the state during the pandemic. That’s going to count against Sin City though as the UFC’s three Fight Island events beginning this weekend will have a “limited fan attendance”:
Fight Island will see UFC fans back in the building 🏝 (via @bokamotoESPN) pic.twitter.com/bIO63kxJRh
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) January 8, 2021
This will be somewhat historic for the UFC as this will mark the first time since March 7, 2020 when fans will be allowed in a UFC event. So while the UFC has approval to stage events in Vegas next month, don’t be surprised if the UFC returns to Fight Island soon. For now though, the UFC looks like its headed back to the United States after its current Fight Island series.
Usman vs Burns at UFC 258
I’m fighting for the UFC belt next vs Kamaru Usman – UFC 258 https://t.co/jYDKHb5CZB via @YouTube ITS ON! TAKE A LOOK 👀 pic.twitter.com/zV8lH2rD4F
— GILBERT BURNS DURINHO (@GilbertDurinho) January 9, 2021
While the UFC has not officially announced its events for February, there are already a handful of big fights that are expected to take place next month. Perhaps the most prominent of those is the UFC welterweight title fight between champion Kamaru Usman and no. 2 contender Gilbert Burns which has been moved several times. That bout is expected to be the main event of UFC 258 on February 13th with Usman currently listed as a -240 betting favorite at BetOnline.
Also tabbed to fight at UFC 258 are former middleweight champion Chris Weidman and former TUF winner Uriah Hall with the latter pegged as a -135 ods on favorite against Weidman’s +115. Meanwhile, the Feb. 6 event will be headlined by former heavyweight title contenders Alexander Volkov and Alistair Overeem. Volkov is currently the -175 favorite with Reem coming back at +150.
Hard-hitting heavyweights Derrick Lewis and Curtis Blaydes will face off in the main event of the February 20 Fight Night affair. Meanwhile, former light heavyweight title challenger Dominick Reyes and Jiri Prochazka will meet in the headliner of the February 27 fight card.