UFC President Dana White promised that “Fight Island” is real. Until there are fights actually being held wherever this island is, it can’t get more real than the promotion’s recent move filing numerous trademark applications.
According to trademark attorney Josh Gerben, who first posted the news on Twitter, Zuffa LLC, the UFC’s immediate parent company, filed 22 trademark applications. The various trademark filings cover the phrase Fight Island and UFC Fight Island for applications ranging from an actual mixed martial arts event to t-shirts to towels and even jewelry.
If and when the UFC starts operating events on Fight Island, as White has promised, the company is prepared to take advantage of any and all marketing opportunities.
On April 13, the UFC filed 22 new trademarks for:
'UFC FIGHT ISLAND'
The filings were made based on an "intent to use" FIGHT ISLAND as the name of a mixed martial arts competition and for branded goods such as clothing and jewelry.#UFC #ufc249 pic.twitter.com/Q9cHHQJFBK
— Josh Gerben (@JoshGerben) April 17, 2020
UFC Fight Island emerged from White’s tenacious attempts to keep UFC 249 on track for April 18. While he didn’t target Fight Island for UFC 249, it was something that emerged as he secured a deal with Tachi Palace Casino Resort to host the April 18 event on Native American tribal lands in California. Fight Island is primarily a space to host international events since many international fighters can’t enter the U.S.
White was fully prepared to move forward at Tachi Palace until executives at broadcast partner ESPN and its parent company Disney called and asked him to stand down, which he did. He did not relent when it came to Fight Island.
“Fight Island is real. Fight Island is a real thing. The infrastructure is being built right now on the island. I’m ready to go,” White declared.
“All the fights that you wanted to see are coming. I respect ESPN. They’ve been an amazing partner to us since Day One. Them asking me to stand down, there is no way I would not do it,” he continued.
“(UFC 249) is not canceled, the fight is postponed and being pushed back. All my fighters that are nervous and freaking out. Don’t be. Don’t be worried about the money, it’s coming. We’re going to hold our schedule. All these fights are still gonna happen. We’re getting ready for Fight Island. Fight Island is where it’s all gonna happen.”
Though White relented on the April 18 date, he has since announced that UFC 249 would take place with another revamped, but stacked, fight card on May 9. He has yet to reveal a location for the May 9 event, but told Yahoo Sports’s Kevin Iole that it would not take place on Fight Island, which won’t be ready until about mid-May.
“We’re going to run through the American fighters pretty quickly, so we have to get (Fight Island) up and ready to roll,” White said.
For now, White is focused on UFC 249, putting together what he calls the “biggest, best fight card possible.”
If the UFC 249 fight card holds together, it would certainly compare to anything the UFC has ever hosted.
UFC 249 Fight Card, slated for May 9:
- Tony Ferguson vs. Justin Gaethje (interim lightweight title bout)
- Henry Cejudo (c) vs. Dominick Cruz (bantamweight title bout)
- Amanda Nunes (c) vs. Felicia Spencer (women’s featherweight title bout)
- Francis Ngannou vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik
- Jeremy Stephens vs. Calvin Kattar
- Donald Cerrone vs. Anthony Pettis
- Greg Hardy vs. Yorgan de Castro
- Alexei Oleinik vs. Fabricio Werdum
- Carla Esparza vs. Michelle Waterson
- Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza vs. Uriah Hall
- Vicente Luque vs. Niko Price
- Charles Rosa vs. Bryce Mitchell
Dana White: ‘I am building the biggest, best fight card possible’
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