Typically European MMA fans are given the shaft when it comes to PPV start times. However the upcoming UFC 254 bout between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Justin Gaethje will apparently be taking place earlier than that.
When it was revealed that Khabib would be facing Justin Gaethje at UFC 254, fans were excited and intrigued. This was the lightweight champion’s first fight since the loss of his father, so there are questions as to how this would affect him moving forward. Moreover, as other fights are revealed for the card, fan expectations have grown for the event, with Nurmagomedov even dubbing it the best card of the year.
— khabib nurmagomedov (@TeamKhabib) September 2, 2020
Khabib Nurmagomedov and Justin Gaethje Will Fight Early
Typically, UFC pay-per-view events will take place at the same time every month, which is in the evening on the western hemisphere, but horrendously early for anyone in Europe or Russia. However this is apparently not going to be the case when Khabib Nurmagomedov fights Justin Gaethje. Speaking after the most recent edition of the Contender Series, Dana White revealed that UFC 254 will take place in a European-friendly timeframe, meaning it will be going down in the afternoon for U.S. viewers.
“Dana White tells me #UFC254 will be held in european prime time at #UFCFightIsland2 so fans can see Khabib Nurmagomedov Vs. Justin Gaethje. Afternoon in American time like what they did on #UFC242”
Dana White tells me #UFC254 will be held in european prime time at #UFCFightIsland2 so fans can see Khabib Nurmagomedov Vs. Justin Gaethje. Afternoon in American time like what they did on #UFC242 pic.twitter.com/Mvv9cOLsvh
— Carlos Contreras Legaspi (@CCLegaspi) September 9, 2020
This is not the normal practice for the UFC, but it is something they did for the last time Khabib Nurmagomedov fought. This contest was in Abu Dhabi, which is where UFC 254 will take place, and it is designed to serve the massive Russian fanbase of the UFC Lightweight Champion. It seems like this is becoming the norm for the undefeated fighter, although this could change the next time he fights stateside.
UFC 254: Khabib Nurmagomedov vs Justin Gaethje goes down Saturday, October 24th.