For the first time since October 2019, the UFC will be holding an event in Australia.
Perth’s RAC Arena has been confirmed as the host of UFC 284 on February 12 (Feb.11 in the US).
While the company may not have been on our shores for a few years, there’s still plenty of talent from this part of the world lighting up the sport.
MORE: Everything you need to know about UFC 284
Here’s how we can expect to see fighting in Perth.
Who will be fighting at UFC 284 in Perth?
Alex Volkanovski vs. Islam Makhachev
Now the number one pound-for-pound fighter on the planet, the featherweight champ has been confirmed to appear at UFC 284.
Aussie fight fans will be in for a treat after new lightweight champion Islam Makhachev called out Volkanovski following his win over Charles Oliveira at UFC 280.
Volkanovski was in attendance and quickly accepted the offer, with the pair agreeing to fight in Australia.
MORE: ‘Can’t wait to prove people wrong’: Volkanovski ready to embrace Makhachev challenge
Yair Rodriguez vs. Josh Emmett
The UFC has wasted no time in filling the hole Volkanovski will temporarily leave at featherweight, with Rodriguez to take on Emmett for the interim featherweight title in Perth.
This fight was announced during the broadcast for UFC 281, only hours after Volkanovski’s title shot at Makhachev was announced.
Jack Della Maddalena vs. Randy Brown
Perth, your boy is on the card.
The rising welterweight is on the quick backup, having easily dealt with Danny Roberts late last year.
In Della Maddalena’s way at UFC 284 is 32-year-old Jamaican-American Randy Brown, himself on a four-fight win streak and looking to stop the hype train in its tracks.
Robert Whittaker vs. Paulo Costa
Robert Whittaker will not be fighting at UFC 284 due to a contract dispute between the UFC and his opponent Paulo Costa.
The middleweight contest was announced as the first fight to feature on the card back in October, although Costa’s contract situation has seen it scrapped.
Whittaker confirmed the disappointing news.
Tyson Pedro vs. Zhang Mingyang
The light-heavyweight has now recorded two first-round knockout wins in a row since making his long-awaited return from injury earlier this year.
Pedro had been teasing a fight announcement on his Instagram and it’s now been confirmed he’ll face Zhang Mingyang.
The Chinese fighter will be making his UFC debut and is on a nine-fight winning streak, all via first-round stoppage, to earn his shot in the promotion.
MORE: Tyson Pedro to fight Zhang Mingyang at UFC 284
Kai Kara-France vs. Alex Perez
The former flyweight title challenger from New Zealand was set to fight in Perth but injury has ruled him out.
Kara-France informed fans of the news on Instagram, declaring:
“I’m gutted I won’t be able to fight in front of everyone in Aus.
“To everyone who supports me, I’m sorry.”
Jimmy Crute vs. Alonzo Menifield
The number 14 ranked light-heavyweight hasn’t fought since being stopped by Jamahal Hill last December but he’ll be back in action Perth.
Hoping to arrest a two-fight skid, Crute will no doubt be looking to make a statement on home soil when he faces the dangerous Alonzo Menifield.
The American has two first-round knockout victories to his name in 2022 and should make for an exciting pairing.
Jack Jenkins vs. Don Shainis
Aussie featherweight Jenkins will make his debut in the UFC in front of his home crowd when he takes on 31-year-old American Don Shainis.
Jenkins recently earned a UFC contract via the Contender Series and the former Eternal MMA champion is keen to put his stamp on the division.
Josh Culibao vs. Melsik Baghdasaryan
Another Australian featherweight, Culibao impressed in his last outing, an entertaining victory of Seung Woo Choi.
Baghdasaryan is on a seven-fight winning streak and should present an interesting challenge.
Jamie Mullarkey vs. Francisco Prado
Central Coast-born lightweight Mullarkey was due to take on German opponent Nasrat Haqparast in Perth until a change of plans.
He’ll now be fighting a UFC debutant, Argentina’s Francisco Prado, who’s record sits at 11-0, all coming via finish.
Mullarkey has an even 3-3 record since making his UFC debut in 2019.
Justin Tafa vs. Parker Porter
Now 3-3 in the UFC, Tafa will be looking to build some momentum when he takes on 37-year-old American Parker Porter.
Tafa will be looking to get the fans on their feet with his heavy hands.
Junior Tafa vs. Waldo Cortes-Acosta
Joining his older brother in Perth and in the UFC is Junior Tafa.
The 26-year-old rounded out 2022 with a first-round knockout while fighting in Japan on a Rizin card, now he’ll get the chance to do it in the UFC.
Tafa, 4-0, is fighting Cortes-Acosta, a 31-year-old born in the Dominican Republic with a 9-0 record.
Cortes-Acosta has won two fights since joining the UFC, both via unanimous decision.
Shannon Ross vs. Kleydson Rodrigues
Gold Coast flyweight Shannon Ross will make his UFC debut in Perth after impressing on the Contender Series.
At 33, Ross has had to bide his time on the domestic circuit but he’ll be keen to make the most of his chance when he faces Brazil’s Kleydson Rodrigues.
Shane Young vs. Blake Bilder
Young will be flying the flag for our friends across the ditch when he faces American Blake Bilder at UFC 284.
The featherweight has lost his last two but will be hoping to turn things around when he faces Bilder, another Contender Series graduate.
Loma Lookboonme vs. Elise Reed
In the women’s strawweights, we’ll see Thailand’s Loma Lookboonme face USA’s Elise Reed.
Joel Alvarez vs. Zubhaira Tukhugov
Spanish lightweight Joel Alvarez will take on Russia’s Zubhaira Tukhugov.
We won’t be seeing Bam Bam in the cage in Perth.
The all-action heavyweight is locked in to face Russian Sergei Pavlovich in the co-main event at UFC Orlando on December 3.
“February, that means camp would have to be over Christmas and New Year and I wanted to spend Christmas with my son,” Tuivasa said before his bout with Pavlovich.
“Definitely, I’ll be there [in Perth]. I’d love to fight in front of the Australian fans but I’ve been pretty active.
“I’m keen to finish off the year with a bang, getting back in the winning column and then have a bit of a rest.
“I’m more excited to be pissed by the side of the ring than be starving myself over Christmas.”
Already a veteran of 16 UFC fights at just 28, Matthews turned in arguably his most eye-catching performance when piecing up Andre Fialho last time out.
The Celtic Kid was campaigning for a fight on social media and he finally got one with Matt Semelsberger on December 18, which he lost via decision.
Could the comeback be on? Unfortunately not yet.
The flyweight ruptured her ACL in April but is on the comeback trail and had earmarked early 2023 as a possible return date.
A fight in Australia would have been nice but it may be coming a touch too soon for O’Neill.
What about the Kiwis?
Israel Adesanya was dethroned as middleweight champion in a final-round stunner by Alex Pereira at UFC 281.
The most likely option for Adesanya appears to be an immediate rematch but with two title fights already on the card in Perth, a third would be a stretch.
His teammate Dan Hooker claimed a nice win over Claudio Puelles on the card and got through unscathed.
The lightweight declared his wish to fight “any man walking this earth” at UFC 284 so he looks a great chance to feature although the clock is ticking.
Light-heavyweight Carlos Ulberg also earned a quick victory in New York so he could be set for a speedy back up if he’s willing and an opponent can be found.
Brad Riddell went down to Renato Moicano at UFC 281 and said he’d be taking some time away from the sport, so he’s off the table.
Shane Young is a Kiwi fighter currently without a fight, so could be lining up something at UFC 284.