UFC 281 is set to be one of the most stacked mixed martial arts card of the year, with two title fights rounding out the event after a highly-anticipated lightweight clash.

In the main event, Israel Adesanya will seek to avenge two kickboxing losses to Alex Pereira, who has compiled a 6-1 MMA record and has surged towards a middleweight title shot.

In the co-main event, Weili Zhang will look to become a two-time strawweight champion as she takes on Carla Esparza, who recently began her own second reign atop the division and will hope it is not as short lived as her first.

Those bouts play out after a lightweight meeting between former interim champion Dustin Poirier and ex-title challenger Michael Chandler, a fight that is expected to produce fireworks.

Here’s all you need to know.

When is it?

UFC 281 takes place at Madison Square Garden in New York City on Saturday 12 November.

The early prelims will start at 11pm GMT (4pm PT, 6pm CT, 7pm ET), with the prelims following at 1am GMT on Sunday 13 November (6pm PT, 8pm CT, 9pm ET on Saturday). The main card then begins at 3am GMT (8pm PT, 10pm CT, 11pm ET on Saturday).

How can I watch it?

The card will air live on BT Sport in the UK, with the broadcaster’s app and website also streaming the fights.

In the US, ESPN+ will stream the action live, as will the UFC’s Fight Pass.


Israel Adesanya (pictured) lost to Alex Pereira twice during the pair’s kickboxing days


Adesanya – 4/7; Pereira – 7/5.

Esparza – 13/5; Zhang – 2/7.

Poirier – 8/15; Chandler – 6/4.

Via Betway.

Full card

Main card

Israel Adesanya (C) vs Alex Pereira (middleweight title)

Carla Esparza (C) vs Weili Zhang (women’s strawweight title)

Dustin Poirier vs Michael Chandler (lightweight)

Frankie Edgar vs Chris Gutierrez (bantamweight)

Dan Hooker vs Claudio Puelles (lightweight)

Weili Zhang will look to become a two-time strawweight champion against Carla Esparza

(Getty Images)


Brad Riddell vs Renato Moicano (lightweight)

Erin Blanchfield vs Molly McCann (women’s flyweight)

Dominick Reyes vs Ryan Spann (light heavyweight)

Andre Petroski vs Wellington Turman (middleweight)

Early prelims

Matt Frevola def. Ottman Azaitar via first-round KO (2:30)

Karolina Kowalkiewicz def. Silvana Gomez Juarez via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

Michael Trizano def. Seung Woo Choi via first-round KO (4:51)

Montel Jackson def. Julio Arce via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)

Carlos Ulberg def. Nicolae Negumereanu via first-round KO (3:44)

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