After the last season of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF), UFC president Dana White was one of the first to go on record to admit that it wasn’t his favorite season. Unlike previous seasons of TUF, the UFC decided to not sign all 32 contestants. Only four names were signed to a contract, which included the winner Colton Smith (3-1) and runner-up Mike Ricci (7-3). For season 17, White already knows that isn’t the case.
“There’ll definitely be more than two guys from this group signed to the UFC,” said White to the Los Angeles Times. “There’s a bunch of beasts in here. We could have a champion here.”
Rashad Evans (17-2-1) and Forrest Griffin (19-7) are the only winners from TUF to later go and capture UFC gold.
Just this past week, The Ultimate Fighter 17 cast was made public for the first time.
While White couldn’t give too many details about the upcoming season, he has said that one fighter in particular has everyone scared to fight him. He continued that this fighter, who he couldn’t name, has sent his opponents to the hospital after their fights with him.
The upcoming season debuts on January 22 with light heavyweight champion Jon Jones (17-1) and Chael Sonnen (27-12-2) serving as opposing coaches. The coaches meet at UFC 159 on April 27 from the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ for the championship.
TUF 17 Finale takes place two weeks prior on April 13 from the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV.