UFC on ESPN Plus

We’ve logged over 30 hours in the Octagon with ESPN+. While the streaming service has the latest UFC events, you’ll still need to pay a lot extra to watch live pay-per-view (PPV) events.

UFC on ESPN+

ESPN+

Monthly price: $9.99/mo.

Annual price: $99.99/yr.

PPV price: $74.99/event

Free trial: N/A

Data effective as of post date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

ESPN+ offers the best value for streaming live sports out of any streaming service, and that’s no different when it comes to watching Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) coverage. For $9.99 a month, subscribers get access to live UFC fights and original series like The Ultimate Fighter and Dana White’s Contender Series.

The major drawback for MMA fans is that the most sought-after UFC matchups are still pay-per-view (PPV) events. To watch UFC’s PPV main card events on ESPN+, you’ll need to pay an additional $74.99 per event.

Keep reading to learn more about what ESPN+ offers for UFC fans and how it’s different from UFC’s own streaming service UFC Fight Pass.

UFC on ESPN+ pros and cons

Pros

  • Exclusive Fight Nights and PPV events
  • The Ultimate Fighter complete library
  • Access to thousands of live sporting events

Cons

  • Expensive PPV events
  • Confusing search function and interface

Is ESPN Plus worth it for UFC fans?

ESPN+ is worth it for anyone who wants the most current UFC content. Even if you already have a cable or satellite TV subscription, you’ll need ESPN+ in your corner because it’s the exclusive provider of UFC on ESPN+ Fight Night and UFC PPV events—two of UFC’s biggest live programs.

In addition to live events, ESPN+ has an extensive library of past UFC fights and on-demand MMA-oriented series. It’s also home to hundreds of other live sports, including other combat sporting events from the Professional Fighters League (PFL) and Top Rank Boxing.

A screenshot of the ESPN Plus media player showing fighters Charles Oliveria and Dustin Poirier facing off in the UFC Octagon.
The ESPN+ media player during a UFC event as seen on a Google Chrome web browser.

While an ESPN+ subscription is only $9.99 a month, you won’t get every UFC event the streaming service has to offer without paying extra. After all, UFC wouldn’t be the multi-billion dollar juggernaut that it is today without its PPV events.

UFC’s PPV events—also called numbered events—are what UFC is all about, and they’re exclusive to ESPN+. That means that, on top of your $9.99-a-month subscription, you’ll need to pay a whopping $74.99 every time a main card PPV event rolls around.

If you’re on a budget, we recommend signing up for ESPN+ to get the Fight Nights and original on-demand series. Then, when PPV events come along, find a bar or theater in your area to tune in at a much lower cost. You can even use UFC’s Find a Bar locator to track down a PPV venue near you.

Pro tip: ESPN+ offers a PPV signup deal for $99.98, which includes one UFC PPV event and an annual subscription to ESPN+. It’s a great way for new subscribers to save $45.00 instantly.

UFC content on ESPN Plus

ESPN+ has around 40 live UFC events per year, including UFC Fight Night and UFC PPV events. Typically, there’s at least one PPV event per month, with two or three Fight Nights leading up to it.

Every Fight Night is included with your ESPN+ subscription, while PPV events cost an additional $74.99 per event. Whether or not you purchase a PPV event, all UFC PPV events become available for replay to all ESPN+ subscribers 16 days after the initial event.

The UFC Archives page on ESPN Plus displays rows of live and upcoming matches.
The UFC Archives page on ESPN+ as seen on a Google Chrome web browser.

In addition to live events, ESPN+ also has exclusive UFC-centric studio shows and documentary series. The following programs are geared specifically towards fans of UFC and combat sports:

  • Dana White’s Contenders Series
  • DC & RC
  • Detail: From the Mind of Daniel Cormier
  • The Chael Sonnen Show with Jorge Sedano
  • Rowdy’s Places
  • UFC 25 Greatest Fights
  • UFC Destined
  • UFC Embedded
  • The Ultimate Fighter
  • Why We Fight

Of course, this isn’t a full list, but it does highlight some mega favorites like The Ultimate Fighter. All 30 seasons of UFC’s premier reality competition series are available to stream on ESPN+.

ESPN Plus vs. UFC Fight Pass

Plan Price Combat sports Video Details
ESPN+ $9.99/mo. or $99.99/yr. MMA and boxing 720p, 1080p View plans
UFC Fight Pass $9.99/mo. or $95.99/yr. MMA, boxing, kickboxing, Muay Thai, Jiu-Jitsu, and more 720p, 1080p View plans

Data effective as of post date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

ESPN+ isn’t the only streaming service that dabbles in UFC content. In fact, the MMA organization has its own streaming service called UFC Fight Pass.

Available separately for the same monthly price as an ESPN+ subscription, UFC Fight Pass carries the entire UFC fight library, exclusive PPV preliminary fights, and over 30 other combat sports events from around the world.

ESPN+ and UFC Fight Pass are a one-two punch for the best UFC content. You’ll still need ESPN+ to watch the UFC’s exclusive Fight Nights and every UFC PPV event, but UFC Fight Pass will get you additional original series and the largest on-demand library of MMA content.

UFC Fight Pass is available in different countries and territories, and its content offerings vary depending on your location. While the streaming service airs UFC PPV main card events live internationally, US viewers will need to wait about a month after the original event date to watch the full event replay on UFC Fight Pass. That’s about two weeks longer than when PPV event replays become available on ESPN+.

When push comes to shove, UFC Fight Pass is a good supplement but not a replacement for what ESPN+ offers. We recommend UFC Fight Pass if you want to watch the most combat sports action, with an emphasis on past MMA events and fights from other MMA promotions.

Other options for watching UFC

Outside of ESPN+, you can also watch select UFC events on ESPN’s basic cable networks. ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNews, and ESPN Deportes show their fair share of UFC content—some of which you can’t watch live on ESPN+.

Most of what airs on the traditional ESPN channels are live preliminaries, recap shows, and greatest hits programs. If you want these channels in addition to ESPN+, we recommend checking out Hulu + Live TV (starting at $69.99 a month). The live TV streaming service includes ESPN+ at no extra charge and has 14 sports-specific channels.

Pro tip: Visit ESPN’s UFC schedule for a complete rundown of upcoming UFC events and channel listings. The schedule will give you a better idea of what’s available on ESPN+ compared to the traditional ESPN channels.

As we mentioned earlier, UFC Fight Pass ($9.99 a month) also offers a lot of UFC content. The streaming service is home to live early preliminaries, the most extensive on-demand UFC fight library, and live combat sports events from international competitions.

Overall, the best ways to watch UFC outside of ESPN+ are the traditional ESPN networks and UFC Fight Pass. The only problem with these alternatives is that they don’t give you access to live UFC PPV events and other content exclusive to ESPN+.

Interested in regular ESPN in addition to ESPN+?

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Final take

While ESPN+ ($9.99 a month) is an excellent streaming service for sports fans in general, its exclusive UFC events make it a must-have for MMA fans. However, you’ll still need to pay an additional $74.99 per event to watch UFC’s marquee PPV matchups.

Overall, a combo of ESPN+, UFC Fight Pass ($9.99 a month), and the traditional ESPN networks through Hulu + Live TV (starting at $69.99 a month) will get you everything UFC has to offer—but it’ll come with a massive punch to your wallet.

UFC on ESPN Plus FAQ

Is UFC free on ESPN+?

With an ESPN+ subscription, you’ll get access to live UFC events and on-demand UFC programming for no additional cost. Only UFC’s pay-per-view (PPV) events cost an additional $74.99 per event.

Can you watch UFC PPV on Hulu?

If you have Hulu + Live TV or the Disney streaming bundle, you can make UFC PPV event purchases within the Hulu app. It’s a convenient way to watch PPV events on Hulu without switching to the ESPN app.

How long can you watch UFC PPV events on ESPN+?

If you purchased a UFC PPV event on ESPN+, you can access the full even replay for up to 15 days after its initial broadcast.

Methodology

Our sports experts spent over 30 hours hands-on testing and researching UFC content on ESPN+ and UFC Fight Pass. We evaluated ESPN+ against UFC Fight Pass based on live and on-demand event coverage, prices, and other exclusive programming.

Check out our How We Rank page to learn more about our methods.

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