Ladies and gentlemen, you’ve been waiting patiently. You’ve become itchy. There’s a void in your MMA life that you need filled. Well, you know what? It’s time. TUF time.
That’s right, The Ultimate Fighter returns tonight with the debut episode of season 21. (Seriously?! 21? Wow that’s a lot.)
TUF 21 premieres tonight, Wednesday, April 22 on Fox Sports 1 at 10:00 p.m. ET. This season premiere will be a special 2 hour episode.
As the title indicates, The Ultimate Fighter: American Top Team vs. Blackzilians has mixed up the format a bit this year. Gone are the traditional champion/challenger coaches picking teams and forcing some kind of artificial team bond. Instead, this season, we get real, legitimate teams.
On one side, you have 8 fighters under the banner of American Top Team. Their opponents are from the Blackzilians camp. All fighters on the show this year are Welterweights, and here is the line-up:
ATT: Marcelo Alfaya, Steve Carl, Nathan Coy, Michael Graves, Hayder Hassan, Sabah Homasi, Uros Jurisic, Steve Montgomery
Blackzilians: Valdir Araújo, Carrington Banks, Luiz Buscapé, Jason Jackson, Vicente Luque, Andrews Nakahara, Felipe Portela, Kamarudeen Usman
Early ads indicate that the very real beef between the camps plays out on the show, with ATT head coach Dan Lambert and Blackzilians owner Glenn Robinson seeming to play a significant role.
One other cool detail I quite like – there is no “TUF Gym” for this one. Training takes place at the camps’ normal gyms, and the fights take place at the gyms as well. Winner of the previous week’s fight earns home field advantage for his team the next week.
It’s all interesting changes for the venerable show, and I for one am pretty excited to see how it all plays out.
Join us right here for live discussion of The Ultimate Fighter season 21, starting tonight.
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