TUF 21 Finale Preview

tuf_21_finaleIt is the show that changed the face of an entire promotion as The Ultimate Fighter’s 21st season finishes with another Finale.

There is nothing bigger in the UFC than the reality show that brought the UFC out of the dark basements and onto major sports networks.

That being said the show is always in need of something to make sure people watch as the UFC constantly looks for a new way to spin things.

Whether it is two fighters that absolutely hate each other or new ground being broken like the 20th season when strawweights marked the first time the show featured an all-woman cast.

This year the UFC completely changed how things were done as they got rid of the fighter coaches and the random teams in favour of a new format that pitted two gyms against each other.

The fight game is full of different gyms and often these gyms are a close-knit group of fighters that go to the point of refusing to fight someone in their gym.

The UFC recognized this and changed the format to feature two of these gyms that are only a few miles from each other and do not like each other.

On one side was American Top Team in Coconut Creek, Florida that was established in 2001 by Dan Lambert.

On the other side was the Blackzillians a gym located in Boca Raton, Florida and established in 2011 by Glenn Robinson.

The two gyms have plenty of hate between the two and it all started when a number of fighters left American Top Team to form their own gym with Robinson as the owner.

Robinson had never been involved in the fight game but had the money to back the fighters who wanted to open the gym.

According to Lambert, Robinson also had the money to pay those fighters that left ATT and in essence steal fighters from American Top Team by offering money instead of developing young fighters.

That rivalry was brought in full force to the reality show as both owners were asked to create a team of eight welterweights from their gym to compete against their long-time rival in a tournament.

Instead of the usual bracket the show featured fights picked by the owners and coaches and not announced until fight day while the final fight was to feature fighters that had at least two fights on the show and were picked by their coaching staffs.

The gym that won the season series won $200,000 while the winning gym of the final fight wins another $300,000 prize.

After a season where the Blackzillians dominated for almost the entire show, American Top Team swept the last three fights that gave them the win on the show.

It was a heartbreaking end to a long show for the Blackzillians and an unbelievable performance for ATT where they only won five fights the entire show and took home the prize, which they then donated to the Wounded Warriors Project.

The Blackzillians will be looking for some revenge though as they head into the finale fight trying to earn back some respect and the $300,000 reward with one fight.

The Blackzillians nominated Kamarudeen Usman while ATT elected Hayder Hassan for the final fight in the TUF Finale.

Usman opened up the show with a win for the Blackzillians when he won by a majority decision against Michael Graves and followed up with a Unanimous Decision at American Top Team against Steve Carl.mma-sidebar.fw

He was a strong fighter in both fights but his second saw plenty of pressure as it was the first time the Blackzillians had fought outside of their own gym and Usman brought it back to the Blackzillian camp.

The wrestler was a master of holding his opponents on the mat throughout the show but before the show was known more for the power in his hands.

Meanwhile Hassan has been the fighter that American Top Team leaned on throughout the competition.

He was the first ATT fighter to win a fight on the show and when they needed to win again and bring it back to ATT they went to him again.

Then in the final fight American Top Team needed a win to take the show they turned to Hassan who once again won and gave ATT the win.

The brawler prefers to stand and trade with his opponents with a TKO, Majority Decision, and Split Decision in his three fights on the show.

The two teams that have shown plenty of hate face-off once again for the final bragging rights on The Ultimate Fighter season 21 and it should be an interesting fight.

They have both had plenty of time to prepare for this fight and will be better fighters when they face-off but Hassan seems to have the upper hand against the Blackzillians and will take this fight with a Unanimous Decision in a thrilling fight.

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