Chris Monti •
Justin Gaethje vs Khabib Nurmagomedov UFC 250 on Fight Island
UFC president Dana White has made his feelings very clear that he expects the lightweight unification showdown between Khabib Nurmagomedov and newly crowned interim champ Justin Gaethje to happen on Fight Island this summer. Justin Gaethje dethroned Tony Ferguson last Saturday in a fifth-round stoppage in one of the knockout artist's best career performances to date and was crowned with the interim lightweight belt.
Khabib Nurmagomedov, who was initially scheduled to fight Ferguson in the main event, returned home to his native Dagestan after learning that the Barclays Center fight venue in Brooklyn had been canceled due to the ongoing global pandemic. The 28-0 star had ruled out any further travel until the mitigating circumstances were under better control and refused to commit to a new fight card.
Fortunately, underdog Gaethje stepped in with limited preparation time and put Ferguson to the sword with some truly mouth-watering combination striking, eventually toppling El Cucuy's seven-year unbeaten record.
Dana White's UFC 249 was an overwhelming success despite the setup of a tumbleweed arena, with not one thwack or thud drowned out by fans. The empty VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida, somehow did not detract from the moment. Dana White's UFC card looked sensational after the president cobbled together a stacked fight card which promised the fans a plethora of action and entertainment.
With UFC 249 basking in its own success story while all other sport remains in darkness, Dana White will be licking his lips with Fight Island being his top priority. So why not check out all of Bet Today USA's UFC predictions, picks, odds and parlay calculators.
Dana White Whale White: Where and What Is Fight Island?
Fight Island will be Dana White's White Whale. It has become a conversation that UFC fans have been discussing since the idea was pried open by the 50-year-old, and the snippets of information that the president is giving away are hard to decipher. The island will most likely be a tropical paradise with the facilities to house fighters and offer state of the art training resources.
White has revealed that the top-secret island remains a legitimate location and has publicized that the infrastructure is currently under construction. The concept of the card having Nurmagomedov fighting Justin Gaethje is still viable but will need an abundance of luck on the UFC's side. White was supposedly reported saying "I don't know if it will be the first one, but it will be on Fight Island unless miraculously the world comes back together faster than I think it's going to."
UFC 250 is scheduled for 6 June on the mystifying Fight Island, meaning the card could see some top household names back in the mix. While the mantra of 'anytime, anyplace, anywhere' may be pushed to the absolute limit with the sport being confined to a tropical island delegated just for UFC.
Will There Be An Octagon On The Beach?
White has confirmed that alongside the high-spec training facilities and hotels with "top-class infrastructure" for the fighters, he's also planting an octagon bang on the beach. The UFC president has made it very clear that Fight Island will spearhead the biggest fights in the UFC going forward, relinquishing Las Vegas' stranglehold on the blockbuster MMA events.
Conor McGregor Weighs In
While Justin Gaejthe has been transported into the upper echelons of the sport, Conor McGregor has become somewhat of a pariah figure in the MMA world, attempting his UFC comeback after falling short to Nurmagomedov in UFC 229.
The Dubliner threw down the gauntlet to the lightweight rival after Gaethje's impressive main event performance claiming he would butcher the American and wear his teeth as a necklace. Ali Abdelaziz, who manages Gaethje and Nurmagomedov, has expressed that McGregor hasn't got a chance of cutting in line to fight Gaethje.
Colby Covington Eyes Kamara Usman Rematch
Colby 'Chaos' Covington has put his name in the hat for a potential rematch with Kamara 'The Nigerian Nightmare' Usman on the tropical fight island in June. The pair's toxic rivalry produced one of the most exciting fights in 2019 when Covington suffered a fifth-round TKO to Usman. The 32-year-old still remains baffled with the officiating of his UFC welterweight title fight against Usman last July, claiming referee Marc Goddard's stoppage decision in both the second and fifth.
The Trump-supporting republican has persistently claimed a rematch and UFC 250 could be the place. With all the heavy speculation and guesswork surrounding this unheralded Fight Island, it will be astonishing for White to push this through for UFC 250, but if the president is successful, then we have some blockbuster cards to look forward to in paradise.