The latest instalment of Fox Sports’ hotly-anticipated ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ kicked off with a bang on September 9
th, and featured the current FC Interim Featherwight Champion, Conor ‘The Notorious’ McGregor against Urijah Faber, former holder of the coveted WEC Featherweight Championship. They’ll both be coaching throughout this newest season of the hit reality TV and combat sports mash up. McGregor has stated that he almost backed out of the offer to be a part of Season 22 as filming duties clashed with his fight schedule for the remainder of 2015, which will see him finally face off against Jose Aldo.
Season 22 pits 16 hungry contenders from the US against 16 from Europe in an elimination style series, which will follow the trials and tribulations of each fighter as they battle to survive until the final elimination show in December and go on to win a UFC contract in addition to one million dollars.
The full list of contenders was revealed at the end of August, and you can find the entire list below:
Andreas Quintana (8-1) from Albuquerque, N.M.
Austin Springer (8-0) from Portland, Ore.
Billy Quarantillo (6-1) from Tampa, Fla.
Brandon Ricetti (7-1) from Chico, Calif.
Brennan Sevin (7-1) from Chauvin, LA.
Chris Gruetzemacher (12-1) from Peoria, AZ
Jason Soares (8-0) from Miami, Fla.
Johnny Nunez (5-1) from Las Vegas, NV
James Jenkins (8-1) from Long Island, NY
Jason Gonzalez (9-2) from Colton, Calif.
Julian Erosa (14-1) from Yakima, Wash.
Mike Flach (7-1) from Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.
Ryan Hall (4-1) from Falls Church, VA
Thanh Le (4-1) from New Orleans, LA
Tim Welch (12-5) from Glendale, Ariz.
Tom Gallicchio (19-8) from Perth Amboy, N.J.
Artem Lobov (11-10-1-1) from Dublin, Ireland
Abner Lloveras (19-7-1) from Barcelona, Spain
David Teymur (3-1) from Stockholm, Sweden
Djamil Chan (19-2) from Amsterdam, Netherlands
Frantz Frank Slioa (4-0) from Stockholm, Sweden
Marcin Wrzosek (10-2) from Bydgoszcz, Poland
Martin Delaney (10-1) from Bathgate, Scotland
Martin Svensson (14-5) from Malmo, Sweden
Mehdi Baghdad (11-3) from Toulon, France
Mohamed Grabinski (10-1) from Dusseldorf, Germany
Paulo Boer (10-1-1) from Holland
Sascha Sharma (8-2) from Stuttgart, Germany
Saul Rogers (10-1) from Bolton, England
Sean Carter (10-1) from Essex, England
Thibault Gouti (10-0) vs. Avignon, France
Vladimir Sikic (10-0) from Frankfurt, Germany
Even if you’re unable to recognise many, if not all of the names, this season promises to be one of the most explosive it builds towards the December 11 th finale on the eve of Mcgregor’s postponed meeting with Jose Aldo. To get you in the mood we’ve included a video of the best fights in the Ultimate Fighter House over the years:
Let us know about your favourite TUF moments:
Were you one of the millions who tuned in to watch the blockbuster season 1 fight between Forrest Griffin and Stephen Bonnar? A fight which helped launch the PPV business of the UFC and help legitimise the approach the company in the eyes of the mainstream. The Ultimate Fighter continues to be a fantastic gateway for casual fans looking to get more of a personal insight to the fighter’s in the Octagon and Season 22 is shaping up to be the most anticipated in recent history.