The UFC is set to make a lasting impression on the United Arab Emirates. The UAE, namely Abu Dhabi, has been an advocate for combat sports for well over a decade and is the birthplace of the Abu Dhabi Combat Club Submission Wrestling Championships (ADCC). This is the most lucrative no-gi jiu jitsu tournament in the world and is held in a different location every two years. ADCC is also the most difficult to qualify for and boasts a whopping $40,000 first place prize in each division. But the love for the sport does not stop there.
With the recruitment of World Jiu Jitsu Champion, Carlos Santos, Abu Dhabi has begun an initiative to include Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) in every school in the Emirate. Already, Mr. Santos has brought in the highest concentration of black belts outside of Brazil and plans to have that number grow substantially. I believe (correct me if I’m wrong) that the plan is to have over 400 schools include BJJ into the curriculum. That there just shows you how committed the UAE is to combat sports.
Now the Ultimate Fighting Championship is being brought in to put on one of the most spectacular events since its conception in 1993. Combined with their new partner, Flash Entertainment, the sky is the limit and both parties are working round the clock to make this a show no one will forget. Let’s start with the arena being custom built for the UFC to provide optimal viewing from every seat, which is a first. It will be held outside, in open air on a beautiful spring evening, again a first. The fact that the UFC has made it to this part of the world before New York is a feat in itself. The UFC offers competition at the purest level, the most complete athletes in sports and an experience with can not be mimicked.
Yas Island on April 10th is going to be electric. Two Titles on the line. Two Legends in a match of redemption and 14 other talented up and comers that are looking to “wow” those in attendance as well as the millions watching around the world. This event is not to be missed. Every aspect of the UFC is unique. Anything can happen at any moment. No fighter is guaranteed to win. All it takes is one punch.
I can’t wait.