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Four UFC Dream Fights For 2024

It’s set to be a banner year for the Ultimate Fighting Championship, writes Quintin van Jaarsveld as he lists four dream fights, we could and should see in 2024.

Conor McGregor

It’s set to be a banner year for the Ultimate Fighting Championship, writes Quintin van Jaarsveld as he lists four dream fights, we could and should see in 2024.

The UFC’s success stems from their unrivalled matchmaking. Unlike in boxing, the world’s pre-eminent mixed martial arts promotion consistently puts on the biggest fights possible. The best fight the best, almost on a weekly basis, making the UFC a magic factory when it comes to the fight game.

After enjoying an excellent and enthralling 2023, the UFC is set for an epic year highlighted by the ultimate legacy fight and the promotion’s landmark 300th pay-per-view event and the long-awaited return of the biggest star in mixed martial arts history, Conor McGregor.

Dream fights are there to be made in 2024, none bigger than these four box-office bouts:

Jon Jones v Stipe Miocic

It’s the biggest fight in UFC heavyweight history and, thankfully, it’s a dream fight we’re guaranteed to get this year.

The blockbuster bout was slated for last November only for Jones to suffer a horrific injury in training. As the ultimate legacy fight, UFC president Dana White has promised it will happen once “Bones” is back to 100% and it’s one the mixed martial arts world can’t wait to witness.

Jones is as close to an unbeatable fighter as they come. The consensus greatest mixed martial arts fighter of all time, the former long-time ruler of the light heavyweight division made it look easy when he submitted Cyril Gane in just over two minutes to capture the vacant heavyweight title and has never legitimately lost. 

Miocic, meanwhile, is the best heavyweight ever. A former two-time champion, he holds a number of divisional records and is the type of complete, hard-hitting fighter that could finally defeat Jones.

Conor McGregor v Justin Gaethje

There’s guaranteed fireworks and then there’s this epic encounter waiting to happen.

There’s an unrivalled buzz and energy whenever McGregor fights. The Irish megastar is a special attraction that transcends mixed martial arts. For as much as he talks the talk, he walks the walk as well and has never been in a boring fight.

Known as “The Highlight”, Gaethje lives up to his moniker every time he steps inside the Octagon. Arguably the most exciting fighter in UFC history, the violence-fueled American is an apex predator and knockout artist extraordinaire.

He’s also the BMF (baddest motherf**ker) titleholder. After his stunning head kick knockout of Dustin Poirier, he’ll likely be Islam Makhachev’s next challenger for the lightweight championship, while McGregor’s set to make his much-anticipated return against Michael Chandler, so if both are victorious, two belts could be on the line. 

Add the fact that these legendary lightweights don’t like each other, and you have a bona fide blockbuster destined to finish in wickedly spectacular fashion.

Dustin Poirier v Nate Diaz

Two of the biggest names in the sport and long-time dogs of wars have been barking at each other for years and frothing to settle their beef inside the Octagon.

The legendary pair were originally slated to fight at UFC 230 at Madison Square Garden back in November 2018. The promotion even held a press conference and face off before negotiations between the UFC and Diaz broke down.

This is the year to finally make it happen. Diaz wants back in the UFC after taking a short hiatus from mixed martial arts for a big-money boxing bout with Jake Paul and “The Diamond” is eager to welcome him back at the landmark UFC 300 event.

Dricus du Plessis v Israel Adesanya

We had it on our list last year before things got personal between the pair, which will only make their showdown that much more epic. Fortunately, it appears as if it’s not if but when the rivals will face off as it’s a grudge match that simply has to happen.

The bone of contention between the two middleweight stars is Du Plessis’ comment that he’ll be the first African born and based fighter to become a UFC champion. The South African ace, who’s undefeated inside the Octagon, gets his chance at capturing gold when he squares off against Sean Strickland in the main event of UFC 297 in Toronto, Canada on 21 January.

Adesanya, who was born in Nigeria but lives in New Zealand, took exception to Du Plessis’ remark and wants to make him pay. They would have fought last year had an injury not sidelined “Stillknocks” for UFC 293, which saw Strickland slot in and dethrone “The Last Stylebender” in one of the biggest upsets of 2023.

Adesanya has since decided to take a hiatus from fighting but if Du Plessis does become champion, it’ll surely light a fire under him to return and settle the beef in the perfect marquee match-up for the first-ever UFC Africa event.

Quintin Van Jaarsveld is a former MDDA-Sanlam SA Local Sports Journalist of the Year and a former three-time Vodacom KwaZulu-Natal Sports Journalist of the Year. Formerly the sports editor and Outstanding Journalist of the Year award winner at The Fever Media Group, deputy editor at eHowzit, editor at and senior staff writer at, he boasts over 15 years’ experience and is currently a freelance sports writer.

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