UFC 144 Main Card is Jampacked: 7 fights in 4 hours




Next week’s UFC 144 event will feature seven main-card bouts instead of the usual five.

Zuffa official Ryan Grab today confirmed the extra-large lineup, which is slated to run four hours.

UFC 144 takes place Feb. 25 at Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan. In addition to the main card, which airs in its normal Saturday-night timeslot with a Frankie Edgar vs. Ben Henderson headliner, prelims air on FX.

Bouts originally slated for the prelims but now part of the PPV broadcast feature two Japanese fighters: Yushin Okami (26-6 MMA, 10-3 UFC), who meets fellow middleweight Tim Boetsch (14-4 MMA, 5-3 UFC), and Hatsu Hioki (25-4-2 MMA, 1-0 UFC), who takes on featherweight Bart Palaszewski (36-14 MMA, 1-0 UFC).

To date the UFC has hosted three events in Japan. None took place at Saitama Super Arena, the former home of PRIDE Fighting Championships, a top rival the UFC purchased and ultimately disbanded in 2007. UFC 144 is the first show in Japan since UFC 29 in late 2000.

The full UFC 144 card now includes:

MAIN CARD (Pay-per-view)
Champ Frankie Edgar vs. Ben Henderson (for lightweight title)
Ryan Bader vs. Quinton “Rampage” Jackson
Cheick Kongo vs. Mark Hunt
Yoshihiro Akiyama vs. Jake Shields
Tim Boetsch vs. Yushin Okami
Hatsu Hioki and Bart Palaszewski
Joe Lauzon vs. Anthony Pettis
PRELIMINARY CARD (FX)
Takanori Gomi vs. Eiji Mitsuoka
Vaughan Lee vs. Norifumi “Kid” Yamamoto
Steve Cantwell vs. Riki Fukuda
Chris Cariaso vs. Takeya Mizugaki
Issei Tamura vs. Tiequan Zhang

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