Well, season 14 of the UFC’s reality series ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ is over, and not a minute too soon. Despite the amazing success of the series, both in terms of finding talent and also earning TV ratings, this formula is completely toast. The series is moving to the FOX network as part of the UFC’s new deal. They have promised a revamped formula for the show, with the only real word we are getting being that there will be more live fights – let’s just say they better do more than that!
First of all, let’s start with the talent assessment portion of the casting. Let’s take this out of the hands of people who know nothing about fighting. Fighters like Din Thomas and Wagney Fabiano, both with extensive MMA resumes, didn’t even make the cut.
The material in the show is just old and stale. Was anyone screaming ‘Oh my GOD, ‘Mayhem’ just left the training tires in Bisping’s room’? Were there members of the viewing public that were astounded by Bisping’s sinister ‘revenge’ of messing with Miller’s car? And a blander, more boring set of fighters? Many of the fights sucked too, a consequence of pulling in guys with 3 fights. Can someone explain to these production fools that a guy willing to dye his hair green may really suck as a fighter!
Here is the point. Where is Brock Lesnar right now? A month from his make or break comeback fight, I bet he is in Minnesota somewhere surrounded by his training camp, and they are working their asses off. Where is Alistair Overeem? With his team and with his chosen coaches, honing a precision, world class athlete that they know and have worked with. Both are comfortable, and both have people working to make sure the atmosphere around the training is the most conducive the fighter can possibly get.
The way the current ‘TUF’ formula goes, we should take Lesnar and Overeem, and force them to live in a downtown NYC studio apartment together. I can see it now. Lesnar says ‘you keep leaving the toilet seat up, Alistair’. Alistair responds ‘I like to sit down to pee’. Ewwww conflict!
And of course, Brock will be trained by Jack Lalanne Jr and Alistair by Richard Simmons. What could be better than conditioning the big boys with the best in the world? Both Jack and Rich would love the Village as well. Thinking about it, I’m surprised we haven’t seen a pink feather scarf one of these seasons.
None of that crap is fighting, but for 14 seasons, that is what the UFC’s reality show has done. It creates a false, artificial atmosphere that creates stress, and believe it or not, this affects fights. It does not show what it takes to be a real fighter.
So for the 15th season, let me urge the UFC once again, to look up the meaning of the word reality. Leave the fighters with their trainers and in their homes and let them prepare for the fights the best way they know how.
I was actually gonna put the finalists for this season down, and write something about the matches. These are the guys we will see next weekend in the UFC’s finale on SPIKETV, vying for the big UFC contract (we have seen guys from the show who lost get chances throughout the 14 seasons). But I really don’t care about them, we can all just watch the fights next week and see.