An extremely important card takes place Saturday night from Las Vegas, as The Ultimate Fighter 17 Finale goes down.
In the main event, Urijah Faber and Scott Jorgensen will battle in a key bantamweight contest. The co-main event will crown a new Ultimate Fighter, as favorite Uriah Hall takes on stunning finalist Kelvin Gastelum.
Also, Miesha Tate and Cat Zingano will meet in the second-ever female fight inside the Octagon. To the winner, a shot at Ronda Rousey’s title and a spot on the next season of TUF.
Urijah Faber vs. Scott Jorgensen
Dana Becker: What an exciting battle. If you have never seen Scott Jorgensen compete, you are in for a treat friends, as he has the motor to go 25 minutes with Urijah Faber. However, Faber’s got the advantage in terms of main event and high-profile fights, as he has competed in numerous championship bouts. That will make the difference in this one, as “The California Kid” solves Jorgensen late in the contest. Urijah Faber via fourth round submission (rear-naked choke)
Joseph Lisnow: Urijah Faber looks once again to land himself in the title picture, of any division. Since he’s fighting friend and training partner Scott Jorgensen they are familiar with each other. I’m looking for Faber to go for the back in this one and take another choke out victory. A win for Faber, especially a stoppage, would have to land him in the top three of the bantamweight division. A loss for either will immensely damage their ranking. Urijah Faber via second round submission (rear-naked choke)
Uriah Hall vs. Kelvin Gastelum
Dana: What a complete animal Uriah Hall was on TUF. And, Kelvin Gastelum just about matched him throughout each round. In fact, despite Hall’s “highlight-reel” wins, I truly feel Gastelum was the more effective fighter on the show of the two. He’ll still be a decided underdog when it comes to this bout, as Hall has an significant reach advantage. The key to these matches is how much the fighter improved during the break from the TUF house to now. Hall is an incredible freak, but Gastelum is a quick learner. Uriah Hall via first round knockout (head-kick)
Joseph: If The Ultimate Fighter 17 plays out as it has, poor Kelvin Gastelum. The entire season was hyped, before and during, around Uriah Hall. At the taping, Hall said he’s there to win for himself, not as a team. What we’ve seen from him is championship level material from stunning knockouts to finishes against some veterans. If Gastelum wins, it might be the biggest shocker in the show’s history. Look for Hall to finish this fast so he gets a quick turnaround match. Uriah Hall via first round TKO (punches and kicks)
Miesha Tate vs. Cat Zingano
Dana: These two lovely ladies have become quick enemies, as they had one of the more intense staredowns of the weigh-ins on Friday. There is plenty riding on the line for both, and much like Faber-Jorgensen, Tate has a huge advantage in terms of big-feel fights compared to Zingano. “The Cat,” though, is unbeaten in her career, and that is not to be overlooked. Can “Cupcake” work up a dessert to slow Zingano down? Miesha Tate via split decision
Joseph: There’s so much on the line in this one that it might come down to who wants it more. The next women’s bantamweight contender and coach of The Ultimate Fighter will be decided as two talented ladies enter the Octagon. Miesha Tate’s feud with champion Ronda Rousey looks to spill into the UFC as she ties Cat Zingano late in the fight and makes her tap. If Zingano wants to avoid that, she must keep this standing but remain wary of that knockout power Tate has. The women could steal the show again with this one. Miesha Tate via third round submission (armbar)