Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) president Dana White confirms that “The Ultimate Fighter” (TUF) is rolling along on ESPN.
The UFC has found great success with Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series. The events usually produce a fun night of action and at least two or three fighters walk away with UFC contracts. Many believe that the series should replace TUF.
Dana White Confirms The Ultimate Fighter Will Continue on ESPN
“‘The Ultimate Fighter’ will continue. There’s still a huge market for ‘The Ultimate Fighter.’ ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ still does well. People will look at the ratings, and they’ll come in at a half-million, 600 (thousand), 650, but that’s the initial rating. Now, with DVR and stuff like that, the numbers are much bigger. Last season’s ‘Ultimate Fighter’ (27) averaged about a million viewers. That’s a lot of people. It’s still a big show and a big brand. Yeah, it’ll go on.”
“Yup. We can do it with ESPN, ESPN+.”
The upcoming season of TUF 28 will see middleweight champion Robert Whittaker and Kelvin Gastelum serve as opposing coaches. TUF has seen fighters grow from being on the show to becoming UFC champions. This includes Forrest Griffin, Rashad Evans, Michael Bisping, Matt Serra, Tony Ferguson (interim), T.J. Dillashaw, Carla Esparza, Rose Namajunas, Nicco Montano, and Whittaker.
Do you think the ESPN deal can put new life into TUF?