Signal to Noise: TUF 17 Finale's best and worst
From the sensational bout between Miesha Tate and Cat Zingano to the overhyping of Uriah Hall to there was much to love and hate at the TUF 17 Finale at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada on Saturday night.
It's time separate the winners from the losers, the good from the bad an the signal from the noise...
The Ultimate Fighter 17 Finale weigh-in results
MAIN CARD (FX, 9 p.m. ET)
-Urijah Faber (136) vs. Scott Jorgensen (135.5)
-Kelvin Gastelum (186) vs. Uriah Hall (185) - "TUF 17" tournament final
-Miesha Tate (135.5) vs. Cat Zingano (136)
-Travis Browne (239) vs. Gabriel Gonzaga (261)
-Robert McDaniel (184.5) vs. Gilbert Smith (185)
PRELIMINARY CARD (FUEL TV, 7 p.m. ET)
-Kevin Casey (185) vs. Josh Samman (184.5)
-Luke Barnatt (185) vs. Collin Hart (184.5)
-Dylan Andrews (186) vs. Jimmy Quinlan (185)
-Clint Hester (185) vs. Bristol Marunde (185.5)
PRELIMINARY CARD (Facebook, 5:30 p.m. ET)
-Cole Miller (146) vs. Bart Palaszewski (145)
-Maximo Blanco (146)* vs. Sam Sicilia (146)
-Justin Lawrence (145) vs. Daniel Pineda (145)
* Blanco was 147 on his first attempt. He was given one hour to cut to the featherweight max and made weight on his second attempt.
The Ultimate Fighter 17 Episode 11 Recap: Semifinal Matchups Announced
Episode 11 of The Ultimate Fighter 17: Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen featured the last two quarterfinal bouts and the announcement of the semifinal matchups.
Having to face Uriah Hall in the quarterfinal round didn’t sit well with Team Jones’ Bubba McDaniel from the moment it was announced. Last week he was having trouble getting mentally prepared. In this week’s episode, McDaniel’s concerns turned to his physical state.
“I’ve fought three times in a short time period now and I feel completely drained. Like, I’m pretty much just wanting to be asleep, and then my back has been hurting again too around my kidney area,” said McDaniel...
Episode No. 10 recap: 'The Ultimate Fighter 17: Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen'
As episode No. 10 of "The Ultimate Fighter 17" opens, Team Jones' Robert "Bubba" McDaniel admits he's not thrilled about the way the quarterfinal matchups were made and that Team Sonnen's Uriah Hall is basically in his head.
Team Sonnen's Kelvin Gastelum, meanwhile, thinks his opponents ares till underestimating his skills. He's paired up with Team Jones' Collin Hart, who's known as a jiu-jitsu specialist. Hart admits he wasn't satisfied with his opening-round win over Kevin Casey and wants to instead throw his hands and be exciting. Chael Sonnen seems to believe that would be fantastic, as he sees Kelvin as a brawler – not the wrestler most seem to believe...
'The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil 2' cast unveiled with 28 welterweights
The 28 welterweights competing in the second edition of "The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil" have been revealed.
"TUF: Brazil 2," which features UFC heavyweights Antonio Rodrigo Noueira and Fabricio Werdum as coaches, debuts March 17 in Brazil on Globo. U.S. broadcast plans have yet to be announced, but the series is expected to be available in North American as an online stream...
The Ultimate Fighter 17 Episode 7 Recap: Styles Make Fights
Josh Samman scored a knockout win of Tor Troeng in last week’s episode, but injured his leg in the victory. He woke up the following morning in “severe” pain.
Samman pulled a quad muscle during tryouts for a previous season of The Ultimate Fighter and formed a blood clot in his leg that required an extensive surgery to correct. He was worried history was repeating itself.
He was taken to the hospital for observation and tests. After an ultrasound, it was determined that he did not have a blood clot...
The Ultimate Fighter 17 Episode 6 Recap: Bowling, Bets and Wild Card Talk
In last week’s episode, Team Sonnen’s Kelvin Gastelum upset Team Jones’ Bubba McDanial, giving Team Sonnen match making control.
Following the loss, the wild card scenario began being discussed. McDaniel, a training partner of Jones’ outside of the show, is a front runner for one of the wild card slots that will give him a rebirth back in to the tournament.
“Bubba lost his fight, but he’s completely healthy. He has very little damage. I think Bubba’s definitely a candidate for the wild card,” said Coach Jon Jones...
The Ultimate Fighter 17 Episode 5 Recap: Reversals, Sweeps and a Submission Finish
In last week’s episode of The Ultimate Fighter: Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen, Team Jones got their first win of the season and gained matchmaking control. Coach Jon Jones picked the most seasoned fighter in the house, Bubba McDaniel, to take on the youngest contestant in The Ultimate Fighter history, 21-year old Kelvin Gastelum.
“My strategy leading into this fight is to utilize Bubba’s experience and just overall game. We believe we’re going to win this fight everywhere against Kelvin,” said Jones. “We called out Kelvin because we thought he was the weakest link and the smartest decision for our team.”
“Me being the youngest guy, I’m probably the one with the least experience in the house. People probably underestimate me, and that’s fine with me. I know how tough I am, and I know how good I am, and I know what I can do. I’m not really worried about what other people are thinking,” said Gastelum...
TUF 17 TV Ratings Dip Slightly, but Remain Strong Two Weeks into the Season
The Ultimate Fighter: Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen opened to the series’ strongest ratings ever since making the move to FX last January.
The third season on FX opened to 1.51 million viewers.
But what is the show’s staying power on a new night and timeslot – Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET – and a revamped production style that has more of a documentary type feel than the shock value of season’s past?
We’re only two episodes into the TUF 17 season, but the early returns are good. The second week of the series held strong at 1.3 million viewers in the follow-up to last week’s two-hour season premier...
TUF 17 Recap, Week 2: Disagreement, Dissension, and Control
Shortly after Coach Jon Jones made the first match-up of the season, dissension spread throughout his team.
After teams were selected in the debut episode, members of Team Jones submitted a list of when they wanted to fight and whom they wanted to face. The list was presented to the coaching staff, but Coach Jones had other plans.
Jones selected Gilbert Smith to face Team Sonnen’s Luke Barnatt. Barnatt has a sizable height and reach advantage over Smith, and the decision didn’t sit well with members of the team...
Early returns indicate Ultimate Fighter move made a big difference
The move of Ultimate Fighter to Tuesday night, with bigger name coaches in Jon Jones and Chael Sonnen, led to a significant increase in viewership.
The two-hour debut episode, which showed the fights to get into the house, did 1.51 million viewers based on the fast nationals. That would be significantly ahead of any episode of the show since moving to FX, but still below the levels the show generally did in its previous incarnation on Spike. The final daily numbers were not yet available at press time due to delays caused by a Monday holiday.
If those numbers hold up, it would be 59 percent ahead of the 947,000 viewers for the open of season 16. That season finished averaging 796,000 viewers, barely half of what the first episode of season 17 did...
TUF 17 Recap, Week 1: A New Take Rejuvenates Ultimate Fighter Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen
The Ultimate Fighter returned on Tuesday night with a two-hour premier, narrowing the 28 welterweight hopefuls down to the 14 fighters that fought their way into the house.
The essence of the series is primarily the same as past seasons. There are 28 fighters trying to win a spot in The Ultimate Fighter house via a series of elimination bouts in the opening episode. The winner goes in the house; the loser goes home.
The series will see the 14 competitors fight their way through a series of tournament bouts, while shacked up in close quarters for six weeks...
With cast announced, 'The Ultimate Fighter 17' could prove volatile
More than two dozen middleweight fighters have been selected for the upcoming 17th season of "The Ultimate Fighter," and one of them is apparently capable of reducing his opponents to nervous breakdowns.
Ultimate Fighting Championship officials revealed to USA TODAY Sports the 28 fighters who will compete on the latest edition of the promotion's long-running reality series, which debuts Jan. 22 (FX, 8 p.m. ET).
Now fight fans will inevitably try to determine which fighter UFC President Dana White recently said struck fear in the hearts of his opponents during filming of the tournament-based competition.
"The whole house is terrified of this guy. Everybody," White said. "I picked this fight, and this guy is lined up with the guy I'm telling you about, and the guy has a nervous breakdown in the house over the weekend.
"This guy scared the living s--- out of everyone. It's awesome."
The Ultimate Fighter 17: "The whole house is terrified of this guy."
"I know you guys are going to call bulls**t on me and all that," White said. "[But] This next season is so awesome and so badass. We have a guy on this season of The Ultimate Fighter, every fight he's in, someone goes to the hospital.
"The whole house is terrified of this guy. F***ing terrified. Everybody.
"I picked this fight, and this guy is lined up with the guy I'm telling you about, and the guy has a nervous breakdown in the house over the weekend. Has a f***ing nervous breakdown. Freaks out and has a nervous breakdown.
"This guy scared the living s**t out of everyone. It's awesome."
'TUF: Smashes' finalist Colin Fletcher: I am 'Freakshow'
Here are a few things you might not know about Colin Fletcher. Things you might not absorb if, you know, you're distracted by his exterior.
It wouldn't be the first time it happened to him.
The man nicknamed "Freakshow" did most of his growing up while spinning records as a DJ. He got his start at a nightclub his father owned. He toured all over Britain spinning "funky house" and trance...
Dana White confirms Ultimate Fighter's return to Wednesdays in 2013
The 17th season of Ultimate Fighter, which is currently being filmed in Las Vegas with Jon Jones and Chael Sonnen as coaches, is expected to air on Wednesday nights, starting in January on FX.
The show moving to a better night was announced by FX Executive Vice President Chuck Safler back in October. Malki Kawa, the manager of Jones, said the move would be to Wednesday in an interview with The Fight Network. Subsequently, MMAFighting.com confirmed the new date with Dana White.
In doing so, the show is moving back to the night it ran on Spike for many years. The show moved to Fridays at the start of 2012, with the move from Spike TV to FX. Even though moving to a significantly higher rated network, and having the fights air live for the first time in the show's history, ratings fell to the lowest level in the show's history.
TUF ‘The Smashes’ Episode 8 Recap: The Worst Thing That Could Ever Happen Has Happened
TUF The Smashes Episode 8 opened with both teams coming together for the announcement of the final preliminary fight, which is between lightweights Grant Blackler (AUS) vs. Mike Wilkinson (UK).
With one of the UK welterweights getting a second chance after Manny Rodriguez’s injury, training was ramped up for the eliminated welterweights in case they got the call.
One of the UK training staff decided to walk in on an Australian training session and coach George Sotiropoulos wasn’t impressed, ordering the UK coach to leave. UK head coach Ross Pearson also came in as they looked for their training book and Sotiropoulos went toe-to-toe with his next opponent.
“I’m not scared of George,” Pearson said. “If he spoke to me like that on the street, I would have knocked him out.”
The teams came together once again, but there was yet another twist. Sotiropoulos revealed that Australia’s new teammate, James Vainikolo, would in fact fight eliminated Australian welterweight Xavier Lucas for a spot in the semifinals.
Both teams once again came together for a Skype meeting with UFC president Dana White...