It's time folks. A new season of The Ultimate Fighter is upon us. Excited? Well, this season, maybe you are. The Ultimate Fighter: Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen is on Tuesday nights, with the season premiere starting this Tuesday at 8:00 p.m. ET on FX.
After a disaster of a season last time, this year is already off to a better start thanks to their coach selection. Whatever you think of both Chael Sonnen and Jon Jones, they will clearly bring a level of intrigue back to the show that was missing from the Shane Carwin vs. Roy Nelson "rivalry". You would assume that Sonnen will play the role of arrogant heel (if you want to get all pro wrestling) to Jones's virtuous champion, but it's starting to seem like maybe those roles will be reversed a la Ken Shamrock vs. Tito Ortiz in season 3. Time will tell.
As for the fighters, we already have the full cast list, which you can check out here. It includes Strikeforce veterans, a few fighters from the Bloody Elbow Scouting Report, a member of the BE community, and one fighter who Dana White insists has terrified everyone in the house (maybe Tor Troeng?).
For much more on the cast, check out ZP's terrific playlist featuring many regional fights from the cast.
Interestingly, it includes 28 fighters in the Middleweight division, which is an odd number. Assuming this debut will be qualifying fights, that would mean 14 fighters get into the house, which doesn't work for a tournament. Perhaps two wild card slots?
We'll start to get answers to all of these questions tonight. With a little luck, someone will finally let these guys bang, bro.
For a different, unique perspective, straight from one of this season's cast members, be sure to check out Josh Samman's exclusive Bloody Elbow report on his experience.
Join us here at Bloody Elbow for live discussion of the season premiere of The Ultimate Fighter: Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen.