We now have an official date for the title bout between UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and interim belt-holder Justin Gaethje.
Whether or not the fight will actually happen that day is anybody's guess.
As noted by ESPN , UFC boss Dana White announced during a Tuesday morning CNN appearance that the unbeaten Nurmagomedov will battle Gaethje on Oct. 24. White didn't disclose a venue or location for the main-event bout.
In May, White suggested that he wanted Nurmagomedov and Gaethje to meet for the title on the UFC Fight Island location on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi to avoid any travel issues caused by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. However, Nurmagomedov's father and trainer, Abdulmanap, fell ill with the virus following heart surgery and was hospitalized that month.
He died on July 3.
It's possible White didn't name a venue because it's unclear where or if future UFC shows will be allowed to occur in the United States as coronavirus cases rise throughout portions of the country. Such concerns don't account for a second virus wave expected to impact the U.S. this fall.
While the summer portion of the UFC Fight Island schedule finished last week, White could return the promotion to Abu Dhabi for the unification match.
Gaethje (22-2) earned the interim crown with a fifth-round TKO of Tony Ferguson at UFC 249 on May 9. Nurmagomedov (28-0) hasn't fought since he submitted Dustin Poirier at UFC 242 last September.