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Thoughts on TUF 7

CLICK for UPDATED TUF 7 CAST SPOILERS 

Dana White in a recent interview with Carmichael Dave Sportstalk Radio expressed that they will be “shaking things up” in regards to the next season of The Ultimate Fighter.

It’s agreed everywhere that the formula of the Ultimate Fighter has grown stale. However, when the aim of the show is to unearth a new superstar and at the same time provide adequate training for other fighters, you can’t really tinker with show and throw in Survivor like twists that affect the quality of training.

The trick is to try and create a show that is both helpful to the fighters and entertaining and engaging to the viewer. Spike and the UFC have tried a number of different ideas like putting coaches on the show who hate each other (TUF 3), filling the house with UFC veterans (TUF 4), and then there most recent tactic seems to be throwing in fighters with little experience who can just add personality and conflict to the show (TUF 5 and 6).

So the question is what can the UFC do to bring back the intrigue without subtracting from the quality of training the fighters are meant to recieve. I have a couple of ideas that could accomplish both of these goals.

1. Bring in Rampage – Let’s face it he was made for TV. The UFC hasn’t used their light heavyweight champ to his full potential…well they haven’t even really used him at all actually, but this would be the perfect place to do so.

However if Rampage is a coach, I don’t believe he should have a rival for his division he is meant to fight at the end. It’ll put the division on hold for too long, and the constant sniping between Serra and Hughes has got old quick. If there’s just another coach from another division, or an actual trainer that Rampage can poke fun at the whole time, it would work well and there wouldn’t be this cloud of negativity that was evident in season 6. Seriously the constant blame game Hughes and Serra kept playing just got tiresome.

An older, “wiser” trainer would work well with my second idea.

2. Work the Underdog angle – Yes I know it sounds a bit stupid, but as long as they don’t keep saying the word “underdog” I think this idea could work out.

If you had two seperate houses, one with tried and tested UFC veterans and the other with a bunch of undiscovered, promising new guys. I have a feeling that the UFC may be working in old UFC fighters like in TUF 4, possibly Evan Tanner? But if you were to seperate the two houses, and eventually have the winner of one house fight the other, or just make them fight all the way through the season, it would be both interesting and compelling to see how good the actual new guys are.

With Rampage as coach of the “newbies” and the older more accomplished UFC veterans coached by some well accomplished trainer, it would really enhance the us versus them feeling and at the same time establishing Rampage as the face of the new generation of fighters, while also plugging the older fighters as having a second chance.

3. Just make sure its Middleweights – The final one is a very simple one and pretty much a given anyway. They have to make it middleweights, because the division is in serious need. Besides for the hardcore MMA fan they would want to check out the show just to see who are potential middleweight prospects.

Just to reinforce it… that means ACTUAL middleweights, not TUF 1 middleweights where the winner dropped to welterweight, the runner up dropped to lightweight and half the rest of them dropped as well.

So that is it. Hopefully Dana White is serious about a shakeup of the show, and not just a half arsed one where he actually allows Bibles or something.

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11 COMMENTS
  • Jeremy says:

    Not a bad plan there sam. I think having Evan Tanner in a house with nothing to do but drink might be dangerous though.

    Middleweights are certainly the way they must go to me. That division is so weak and in need of some help. The one thing that has bothered me is that they seem to be taking on way to many guys who are more or less personalities and not truly mma fighters at this point. I’d much rather them get more established fighters, for example Jason Day, or someone like that. These guys are ready to burst onto the UFC anyways, might as well give them good exposure prior to becoming UFC fighters.

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  • Dave says:

    I agree with most of what you said, but I have a couple of thoughts.

    Firstly as already mentioned, Evan Tanner is probably too mentally fragile to be put in that enviroment.

    Secondly, The middle weight division needs most fixing, therefore have a lightheavy show, with a view to having guys cutting to middleweight after the show. Alot of guys have improved during their time on the show, but they needed to drop a weight class to hold their own against top level competition.

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  • Dizzle says:

    I say they bring in Joe Rogan to host the show.

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  • screwface says:

    id like them to mix it up, put all weights in the house similar to season 1. rampage and wanderlei silva as coaches would be fun too. and they need to fix the whole team members forced to fight each other thing or change the whole team concept a bit. maybe alternate fighters with coaches and let fighters choose other team members to corner them instead of coaches. just quick thoughts maybe some1 has a better idea. but the whole team thing doesnt seem to make sense as a whole when it comes down to 1 fighter fighting to win the contract. might make a better reality show when every1 views all fighters as thier competition from the beginning. every man for himself imo :p

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  • bubbafat says:

    of course they’re gonna have Rampage as a coach on the next one. and of course they’re gonna make the other coach a title contender. how else can they tie up ALL their championship belts into limbo for an extended period of time? don’t you know that now there has to be an interim champ in every division. Rampage vs The Spider for the 205 belt TUF 7, that should screw things up real good.

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  • Eric says:

    Good ideas, hopefully they materialize.

    Tanner needs to police himself and not have others makking sure that he isn’t set up for failure. He is an adult and should be accountable for his actions. If he is in the house and there is alcohol present, he needs to steer clear.

    Wanderlei would be an awful choice as coach. TUF needs coaches that wouldn’t need a translator. The language barrier would be a major issue. As a viewer, I want to see Wanderlei fight, not garble through the english language.

    I hope the team concept is scrapped. It comes down to every man for himself, so why portray it as a team when clearly, everyone should be out for themselves. They should have 2 coaches who coach everyone. If the gym isn’t big enough to house all 16 fighters during training, they should rotate and different guys should train at different times every day. (Fighter A trains with Fighters B & C, but then the next day, A trains with B & D) I hope this isn’t too confusing. If it is, oh well.

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  • Adam Morgan says:

    Bringing in Rogan to host the show would be awesome. He’s a perfect fit. He’s done reality television and he is a face of the UFC.

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  • el boxeo says:

    what they should do is have the TUF be current… or like a week behind… not this taping 4 months in advance and then airing it… DO THEY NEED TO DO THAT MUCH EDITING…

    other shows that are pretty much live… are reality shows like big brother… and even the hatton v/ mayweather 24/7 works so well cause its so close to the actual date of the fight…

    imagine being able to see these fights live…or at least a week from really happening…

    i can pretty much gauge how long the fight will be based on when the fight starts ex. if the fights starts at 10:50 then i know its a first round ko…

    they probally waste more money editing 4 a couple of months than they would having to show this fights either live or at least a week apart…

    make the fights more current and live and everybody will tune in to see the unexpected… that would be enought to put TUF into another straosphere ..and why the hell are they being placed in solitary confinement… who cares.. let them have tv. or go out.. or contact with whomever… its an unrealistic thing they make the fighters do…and all for what so they can go crazy and break walls,,,

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  • Rln says:

    “Wanderlei would be an awful choice as coach. TUF needs coaches that wouldn’t need a translator. The language barrier would be a major issue. As a viewer, I want to see Wanderlei fight, not garble through the english language.”

    Wandy’s English is very good these days. He’s spent a lot of time learning it and it shows. US vs. Brazil for the next TUF would see some good fireworks.

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  • screwface says:

    if worse came to worse that would be an awesome idea, usa vs brazil. brazil has a lot of untapped talent. true the language barrier would kinda suck. but if they recruited half from brazil and half from usa just imagine the reality we would get out of these dudes in 1 house, sides would clearly be taken and drama would unfold like never before. i hope dana reads these, cuz he seems to know a lot of what blogs and forums say for a guy who hates the hardcore fans. is that not what we are :)

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  • Sam Cupitt says:

    I was previously an advocate for Wanderlei and Rampage as coaches but then I thought about it and I didn’t want either of them not fighting for an extra period of time.

    Yeah I know putting Tanner in the house would be a bit reckless but It would be a good way to get him back in the public consciousness. But yeah, I don’t think he’d want to and it’d be too risky.

    Joe Rogan to host the show would be sweet. Dana White probably wouldn’t give up his role though.

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