That The Ultimate Fighter: China features the powerhouse *coaching* duo of Tiequan Zhang (currently riding a 3-fight losing streak with his sole UFC win coming over Jason Reinhardt) and Hailin Ao (retired) should say more about the talent level of its contestants than we ever could, but you guys have got to read this.
The premiere episode of TUF: China transpired last Saturday. While most of us here in the states failed to take notice of this, f4wonline‘s Mark Harris recently published a recap of the episode and offered some insight. You should check out the entire summary here, but the following paragraphs truly emphasize how fucked this season is going to be (emphasis mine):
The fighters on this season are a mixed bag of promising talent and hapless newbies…The quirkiest character this season is Li Jin Ying (0-0, welterweight), who admitted to having no MMA experience before sparring in front of the cameras. His appearance on the show is so bizarre I have to wonder if he’s only on to illustrate to viewers the level of training and experience that’s needed to succeed in MMA.
Li is a spiritualist yoga instructor “eager to be Asia’s biggest MMA star”. Yes, a yoga instructor. He has a photogenic face, the kind of face UFC would probably want to put on advertisements in China, but he apparently has no MMA experience and describes himself as shy.
I never dreamed that there would come a day when TUF and American Idol adopted the same criteria for selecting contestants. I was wrong. “Oh, Li’s never fought before, but he’s cute *and* shy!! QUICK, TELL STACY AND MINDY TO TEXT IN THEIR VOTES FOR LI OR WE’LL DE-FRIEND THEM ON FACEBOOK!”
Here’s an idea: If the talent level of the region you are trying to promote your television show in is so depleted that you have to start bringing in “fighters” who have never fought before, maybe focus on another area. Better yet, maybe just hold off on the goddamn reality show altogether and focus on finding higher quality fighters for the original incarnation of the show here in America. Aside from the finalists, not one of TUF 18′s male contestants were given a second shot in the UFC. Not one. Yet they think a 0-0 yoga instructor stands a chance of competing in the world’s premier MMA organization with a couple month’s sprawl training under the tutelage of a guy who would have already been fired if not for the the promotion’s racially transparent marketing gimmicks?
Is anyone aware that you can be seriously injured or killed in this sport? Or that throwing a “hapless newbie” into the lion’s den because he meets the correct ethnic standards is, you know, sadistic and insane?! Is it too much to ask that “has sparred before” should be included on the checklist of potential TUF contestants?!! WHAT THE FUCKING FUCK IS HAPPENING TO YOU, UFC?!!!!!
I originally thought comparing the UFC to the Super Fight League was a bit harsh on the former, but now it’s become clear that the comparison is only insulting to the latter. Say what you want about the SFL, but at least their fighters have hit pads before.
Before I go, I would like to tell everyone who objected to my article on “The Death of UFC-Caliber Fighters” to kindly eat a dick. PEACE!!