Israel Adesanya is looking for his second UFC title.
Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
We’re mere hours away from UFC 259. Forget Conor McGregor, forget Usman vs. Burns — this is the card of cards. This is the one you should be getting hyped about. Three title fights. Three. And not just any title fights, extremely good ones.
The main event is particularly exciting. The UFC middleweight champ (and mega-star in-waiting) Israel Adesanya moves up a weight class to become the UFC’s latest “champ-champ.” He faces off against the recently crowned UFC light heavyweight champ Jan Blachowicz. Hilariously he weighed in for this fight at 200.5 pounds, almost five below the limit. No-one’s weighed in for a light heavyweight title fight that low since UFC 32.
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It’s an interesting strategy for an interesting fight. Blachowicz is a monstrous hitter and Adesanya might be the best pure striker in the UFC. This matador-bull match-up is sure to have everyone on the edge of their seats for as long as it lasts.
But we also get to see the consensus best female fighter of all-time Amanda Nunes defend her featherweight crown against Australian star Megan Anderson. Outside of a rematch with Cris Cyborg, this is probably the biggest women’s UFC fight out there right now. Can’t wait for that one.
We also get a title fight in perhaps the most stacked division in UFC: Bantamweight. Petr Yan vs. Aljamain Sterling is a battle between most likely the two best bantamweights in the world right now. Can’t wait to see how this one plays out.
How to watch UFC 259
This year the UFC entered into a new partnership with ESPN. That’s great news for the UFC and the expansion of the sport of MMA, but bad news for consumer choice. Especially if you’re one of the UFC fans who want to watch UFC live in the US.
In the US, if you want to know how to watch UFC 259, you’ll only find the fight night on PPV through ESPN Plus. The cost structure is a bit confusing, but here are the options to watch UFC on ESPN, according to ESPN’s site:
Existing yearly ESPN Plus subscribers can order the upcoming UFC fight for $70. Existing monthly ESPN Plus subscribers will be able to either upgrade to an annual plan and buy UFC PPV for $85 or purchase the ability to watch the UFC event on PPV for $70 by itself.New ESPN Plus subscribers can buy a bundle of one UFC PPV event (streaming in HD) and an ESPN Plus annual recurring subscription for $90. This is a decent deal. The previous bundle gave a saving of 25% but this new bundle is a 35% saving. The ESPN Plus annual ESPN subscription will auto-renew after one year, at the price of an ESPN Plus annual subscription at the time of auto-renewal.
You can do all of the above at the link below.
MMA fans in the UK can watch UFC 259 exclusively through BT Sport. There are more options if you live in Australia. You can watch UFC 259 through Main Event on Foxtel. You can also watch on the UFC website or using its app. You can even order using your PlayStation or using the UFC app on your Xbox.
Need more international viewing options? Try a VPN. See the best VPNs currently recommended by CNET editors.
Based on previous UFC times, this is the schedule we expect…
USThe main card starts March 6, 10 p.m. ET (7 p.m. PT).The prelims start March 6, 8 p.m. ET (5 p.m. PT).The early prelims start March 6, 6.00 p.m. ET (3.00 p.m. PT).UKThe main card starts March 7, 3 a.m. GMT.The prelims start March 7, 1 a.m. GMT.The early prelims start March 6, 11.00 p.m. GMT.AustraliaThe main card starts March 7, 2 p.m. AEDT.The prelims start March 7, 12 p.m. AEDT.The early prelims start March 7, 10.00 a.m. AEDT.Fight Card
Given how volatile and fluid previous fight cards have been in the COVID-19 era, expect this one to chop and change. Here’s where we’re at right now…
Main CardJan Blachowicz vs. Israel AdesanyaAmanda Nunes vs. Megan AndersonPetr Yav vs. Aljamain SterlingIslam Makhachev vs. Drew DoberThiago Santos vs. Aleksandar RakicPrelimsDominick Cruz vs. Casey KenneySong Yadong vs. Kyler PhillipsJoseph Benavidez vs. Askar AskarovRogerio Bontorin vs. Kai Kara FranceEarly PrelimsTim Elliot vs. Jordan EspinosaKennedy Nzechukwu vs. Carlos UlbergSean Brady vs. Jake MatthewsLivinha Souza vs. Amanda LemosUros Medic vs. Aalon CruzMario Bautista vs. Trevin Jones