The Ultimate Fighting Championship has grown to be the biggest MMA promotion in the world and the number of events held each year continues to rise in number. Take 2022 as an example – a year consists of 52 or 53 weeks – in 2022, the UFC will hold a total of 42 events, which means that there is one almost every week of the year. But if you are new to the sport and the UFC, in general, you will see that each event has a different name and there are several types of events.
While the UFC Pay-Per-View events continue to be the epitome of the organization and the MMA world as a whole, the organization now hosts smaller events on a weekly basis – the UFC Fight Night, which often goes by different names like UFC Vegas and UFC on ESPN+. What is the difference between the big events and the smaller UFC Fight Nights? Here is everything you need to know to understand the concept.
Our Latest UFC Fight Night Predictions
Vanessa Demopoulos vs Maria Oliveira
Maria's base is Thai boxing. She has good striking technique with a lot of feints and impressive physical strength. With the help of pressure and aggression, she won 7 out of 12 victories by knockouts. The main drawback of the Brazilian is wrestling. Once on the ground, she tries to improve her position, but she makes mistakes and only makes things worse.
Vanessa has a purple belt in BJJ. Demopoulos is trying to quickly transfer the fight to the ground, where she controls her opponents well and tries to get to a submission. She won 4 of 8 victories by submissions.
If Demopoulos fails to land a takedown, then she looks mediocre in a fight. She is too slow, and her punches are inaccurate and not technical. Athletes with good striking technique took her apart in the rack without any problems.
Ricky Turcios vs Kevin Natividad
Ricky prefers to work on the stand. He fights in a pragmatic manner, scoring points. He combines good striking technique and superior anthropometry to work effectively at medium and long distances.
Turcios isn't worried about defense at all. He misses about 5 beats per minute and can run into a powerful punch, after which he will not get up. This is exactly what happened in 2018 when Ricky fought Mana Martinez, who is now in the UFC. Turcios ran into an oncoming punch and was finished in the 1st round.
Kevin is a classic drummer. He has a good boxing base, and there is knockout power in his fists. The fighter has good defense against takedowns. Once in the ground, he quickly gets rid of the control of the opponent and rises to his feet.
Kevin lacks aggression and variety. For example, in a fight against Miles Johns, the fighter was too passive and carried out straightforward identical attacks, which is why he regularly ran into an opponent's jab.
What is the difference between the regular UFC PPV Events and UFC Fight Night?
Even as a new fan of the sport, you should have noticed that there are different kinds of UFC events throughout the year. There are the “numbered” UFC events and the more common UFC Fight Nights. What is the difference?
Let's take August 2022 as an example – the UFC held three events in that month. Two were UFC Fight Nights and one was UFC 278: Usman vs Edwards 2.
While you can watch the regular Fight Night on ESPN+ as long as you have a membership, you had to pay an additional price to watch UFC 278 – $69.99. And there lies the main difference – the numbered events are pay-per-view and these are the biggest fight cards of the year.
UFC 278 and all numbered events have a main event or several bouts that are for one of the titles in the organization and most of the fighters in the card are either UFC stars or the biggest prospects. There usually are about 12 such events in the calendar year.
When it comes to UFC Fight Nights, these are the lower-tier events that include smaller fighters, newcomers, and prospects that are trying to reach a title fight in the near or distant future. This is where you will see fighters build up their reputation and try to attract the attention of the boss – Dana White. UFC Fight Night bouts consist of three rounds while the championship bouts of the PPV events are always 5-round fights.
UFC Fight Night Venues – What is UFC Vegas?
While most UFC events take place in the United States, the UFC Fight Nights – the smaller events – are nowadays sometimes held in foreign locations. After all, the UFC wants to one day host events on different continents.
For example, the UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs Aspinall and the UFC Fight Night: Volkov vs Aspinall were both held in the O2 Arena in London. This is a venue that will hold a lot more events in the coming years.
During the lockdown, the UFC created a new location in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates and held a number of Fight Nights there too. Right now, the UFC will host its first event in Paris, France – the UFC Fight Night: Gane vs Tuivasa.
While we expect to see more locations in the future, the majority of the events continue to be held in the United States and there is one very special location – the UFC Apex in Las Vegas.
Perhaps you have seen that some events are called UFC Vegas. The UFC Apex is the privately owned complex of the organization and it hosts the biggest number of events throughout the year. UFC Vegas events are regular Fight Nights, never the big pay-per-view events as they are held in massive arenas.
And that is about it – you will find that UFC Fight Nights go under many names but it is the same thing. It is a regular marketing practice to promote the location or the streaming provider of the given event.