The top of the fight card for the UFC’s return to Abu Dhabi now has two blockbuster fights.
UFC president Dana White took to social media to announce two huge matchups for UFC 294, which is set to take place at the Etihad Arena on Saturday, October 21.
Headlining the card will be a lightweight title rematch as defending champion Islam Makhachev lines up against the man he defeated to win the belt, former champ Charles Oliveira.
White also announced the addition of two middleweight bouts, with Khamzat Chimaev set to take on Paulo Costa, and Ikram Aliskerov facing off against Nassourdine Imavov.
“I’m here to announce that the card that everyone has been waiting for, we got it done,” White began.
“Abu Dhabi, UFC 294, on Saturday, October 21. The main event, Isman Makhachev will defend his lightweight title in the rematch against Charles Oliveira.
“Makhachev has won 12 in a row, and the former champion Charles Oliveira has won 12 of his last 13, including finishes over Justin Gaethje, Dustin Poirier and Michael Chandler, and his one loss in those 13 fights is to Islam.
“After that loss, he bounced back with the first round TKO of Beneil Dariush, extending his UFC record for most finishes to 20.
“Also on the card, the guy everybody’s been waiting to hear about, Khamzat Chimaev, returns, and he will be facing Paulo Costa.
“Chimaev is 12-0, 11 finishes, and he’s coming off a dominant first-round submission of Kevin Holland.
“Costa has an 86 percent finish rate, and let just say this. He and Chimaev do not like each other. This should be one hell of a fight. Costa was originally scheduled to face Ikram Aliskerov in Salt Lake City next weekend, so now we’re moving him to UFC 294, as well. He’ll be taking on 12th-ranked Nassourdine Imavov.
“It’s also the fifth edition of Abu Dhabi Showdown Week. UFC will take over the city with parties, meet-and-greets, and fan events leading up to UFC 294.”
Another bout announced for the event will feature two flyweight contenders, as Tim Elliott takes on undefeated former amateur world champion Muhammad Mokaev.
UFC 294: Confirmed fights
- Islam Makhachev vs. Charles Oliveira – for lightweight title
- Paulo Costa vs. Khamzat Chimaev
- Nassourdine Imavov vs. Ikram Aliskerov
- Tim Elliott vs. Muhammad Mokaev