Uriah Hall figures to be one of the favorites on “The Ultimate Fighter 17.” | Keith Mills/Sherdog.com
Having served as a staging ground for some of the best known and most successful mixed martial artists, “The Ultimate Fighter” reality series returns for its 17th season -- the third with the FX network -- on Jan. 22 at 8 p.m. ET/PT. Light heavyweight champion Jon Jones will coach opposite Chael Sonnen in advance of their UFC 157 main event on April 27 at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.
Launched in 2005 on Spike TV, “The Ultimate Fighter” has spawned some of the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s most valuable commodities, including Josh Koscheck, Kenny Florian, Rashad Evans, Gray Maynard, Michael Bisping and Forrest Griffin. The show ran for 14 seasons on Spike TV until the UFC’s broadcast agreement with the Viacom-owned network expired, prompting the organization to sign a seven-year deal with Fox and move the series to FX in 2012.
Season 17 will feature 28 prospective middleweights, as they vie for a six-figure contract with the UFC. The two finalists who navigate their way through the single-elimination tournament will meet at “The Ultimate Fighter 17” Finale. The Season 17 cast includes EliteXC veteran Robert McDaniel, NCAA All-American wrestler Nik Fekete, reigning Ring of Combat champion Uriah Hall and Swedish export Tor Troeng.
The stories of interest on Sherdog.com this week: