TUF 19 Finale Preview

tuf19_finaleThe factory of UFC talent continues to turn as The Ultimate Fighter finishes its 19th season at The Ultimate Fighter 19 Finale. It has become a constant throughout the calendar as there are two shows every year plus the international shows that continue to bring new fighters to the UFC. It has become a de-facto minor leagues of the UFC with young fighters and experienced fighters who have yet to get their shot earning spots in the UFC through the show. The show can provide some great moments and some great fighters as champions have come out of the show but the 19th season was not exactly what Dana White was expecting. After years of thrilling fights and great action throughout the show the 19th season was a disappointing one. The fights to get into the house were as thrilling as any other season as knockouts and submissions would highlight the first episode. From there though the finishes were few and far between. Decisions would rule the show as fighters struggled to get Dana White excited about their performances. It was easily the most disappointing show in the series with few fighters really making an impression. On a show where fighters are looking for a chance to fight in the UFC and earn a contract not making an impression is paramount. Despite the fact that only two fighters will win a UFC contract on the show there are countless fighters who never won the finale or never made the finale that earned contracts with the UFC. The key was to make an impression on White and the rest of the UFC even if they lost. This season would see very few fighters make that impression as only three fights ended with a finish and the most exciting decision was one that had controversy over the decision made by the judges. Still two fighters will get a UFC contract and will become a member of a very exclusive club of TUF Champions. When the champions are named there is only one sure thing as the champions will be from Team Edgar. It was a season sweep for the former lightweight champion as all four spots in the finals were taken by his team. In the light heavyweight division Eddie Gordon and Dhiego Lima will face off while the middleweight division will see Corey Anderson and Matt Van Buren fight for the title. The matchup between Gordon and Lima should be an interesting one between two heavy-handed strikers. Despite being primarily a striker Lima would show a lot more during the show as he would be the only fighter on the show to end both of his fights and would do it by submission. He is a well-balanced fighter but wants to show his striking ability in this fight. That could be dangerous against Gordon who had some of the strongest striking on the show. If Lima decides to stand he will need to avoid the strikes of Gordon and might be better suited for taking the wrestler to the ground where he holds an advantage. The fight always stays on the feet though and for that Gordon will likely take the win via knockout in the second round. In the middleweight finale the matchup between Anderson and Van Buren is one that many believe is a win for Van Buren. Throughout the show Van Buren has shown his ability and quickly became a favourite. Despite his lack luster preliminary he would finish off his time on the show with a big win in the most exciting fight in the season beating Daniel Spohn in a second round KO. He has big power in his hands and a wrestling background making him a balanced fighter, although he will always choose to stand. Anderson, on the other hand, is a wrestler with his own power but nothing as impressive as Van Buren has shown in the past. Anderson will put up a good fight but Van Buren just seems too ready to be a UFC fighter and will take the win via knockout in the first round.

After two more fighters are added to the roster for the UFC the coaches of this season will face off for the third time. Frankie Edgar clearly won the show with all four of his fighters in the finale and that was not the first time that Edgar beat Penn. These two fighters would face off two other times in the lightweight division. The first fight would see BJ Penn defend his lightweight title against the rising Frankie Edgar. The fight would see both fighters put on a show but in the end Edgar came out on top to win the lightweight title. Penn would get a rematch to try to earn his title back but this time it was a more convincing win for Edgar. “The Answer” would take the Unanimous Decision win again ending Penn’s time at the top of the lightweight division and beginning his own run as the title holder. Penn would go on to four more fights before leaving the UFC in semi-retirement. Now Penn returns to the UFC to fight Edgar for the third time this time hoping to get the win and begin a title run in a new division. With Edgar now at Featherweight Penn will drop to a new weight and take the one fighter he can’t seem to solve. After a legendary career Penn does not need to prove anything to anyone else as the future hall of famer has done everything a fighter can do in the UFC. Still the losses to Edgar have been a thorn in his side and he hopes that he can come back to beat Edgar for the third time. Meanwhile Edgar is looking to earn another win over Penn and continue his run back up the ladder in the featherweight decision after making his debut in the division with a title fight, a loss, against Jose Aldo. Another win over Penn would help him get back to the top and challenge Aldo again. If this fight is anything like the first two the main event of the finale is sure to be a contender for Fight of the Night as Penn makes his return to the UFC and hopes to get the win in his first fight in another new division.

 

Fight Card

Main Event:
“The Prodigy” BJ Penn vs. Frankie “The Answer” Edgar (Sportsnet 360/Fox Sports 1)

Main Card:
Corey “Big Ceezo” Anderson vs. Matt “Gutter” Van Buren [TUF 19 Light Heavyweight Title] (Sportsnet 360/Fox Sports 1)

Eddie “Truck” Gordon vs. Dhiego Lima [TUF 19 Middleweight Title] (Sportsnet 360/Fox Sports 1)

Derrick “The Black Beast” Lewis vs. Guto Inocente (Sportsnet 360/Fox Sports 1)

Dustin Ortiz vs. Justin “Tank” Scoggins (Sportsnet 360/Fox Sports 1)

Undercard:
Kevin “Motown Phenom” Lee vs. Jesse “The Body Snatcher” Ronson (Sportsnet 360/Fox Sports 1)

Tuerxen “The Wild Wolf” Jumabieke vs. Leandro “Brodinho” Issa (Sportsnet 360/Fox Sports 1)

Adriano Martins vs. Juan Manuel “Fenix” Puig (Sportsnet 360/Fox Sports 1)

“Dragon” Dan Spohn vs. Pat “The Beast from the East” Walsh (Sportsnet 360/Fox Sports 1)

Sarah “Cheesecake” Moras vs. Alexis Dufresne (UFC Fight Pass)

Robert Drysdale vs. Keith Berish (UFC Fight Pass)

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