Robert “Bubba” McDaniel entered The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) house as the most seasoned contestant with a 20-6 record. His time on the show might not have shown that, as Kelvin Gastelum submitted him in round two before Uriah Hall finished him in the quarterfinals within 10 seconds.
Heading into TUF 17 Finale, McDaniel felt the pressure to win and did so with a triangle armbar in the final round opposite Gilbert Smith. McDaniel knew that he needed to finish the fight as the judges can be known for crazy scoring.
“You never want to be finished,” said McDaniel to MMA Fighting. “Even in a fight, I’m looking to finish at all times. I don’t ever want to go to a decision because a judge can take it away from you at that point. So having the finish is putting the definitive stamp on it and that’s what I wanted.”
“Bubba” has been known for finishing over 10 of his opponents in the first round. The loss for Smith ended the three fight win streak he started in 2012.
The main card of TUF 17 Finale opened with these two, in the UFC’s return to the Mandalay Bay Events Center from Las Vegas, NV.