UFC 144 is an upcoming mixed martial arts event that is scheduled to take place at the Saitama Super Arena, in Japan. Japan is arguably the Mecca of Mixed Martial Arts, well known for the birthplace of PRIDE Fighting Championships, what many MMA fans consider one of the best MMA fight promotions that ever lived. UFC President Dana White even admitted that if there was ever any competitive organization out there, it was most definitely be PRIDE FC.
The UFC will be making its return to Japan with a super stacked fight card, headlined by a UFC title fight between current lightweight champion Frankie Edgar and no. 1 contender Ben Henderson. The co-main event will feature former PRIDE FC superstar Quinton “Rampage” Jackson taking on Ryan “Darth” Bader.
From Dana White:
“Japan is an important market for us, it was a place that was huge at one time. Some of the greatest fights that ever happened in MMA have happened in Japan. And I’ve always said, that huge rivalry between us and PRIDE, it was some of the funnest moments of my life. It was actually fun. If you look back throughout history, there’s only one show that I have ever said was a competitor to the UFC and it was PRIDE. It was the only show that I would ever put on the same level and put on a pedestal, that was the same as the UFC.”