Las Vegas, Nevada – The Ultimate Fighting Championship® organization is proud to announce the coaches for the upcoming season of The Ultimate Fighter® are interim UFC heavyweight champion Shane Carwin and top heavyweight contender Roy ‘Big Country’ Nelson.
Taping for the show’s second season on FX will begin in early August, with the debut episode slated to air in September.
UFC President Dana White said: “This is going to be a very interesting dynamic between these two heavyweights. They both have huge punching power and great chins but, outside of the Octagon, they couldn’t be more different. These two have been going at it on social media for a while and don’t seem to like each other very much, but they are going to be seeing a lot of each other during this series and I guarantee it’ll make for great TV.”
“Working with Dana White, Lorenzo Fertitta and Craig Piligian on the first season of The Ultimate Fighter on FX was one of the highlights of my professional career,” said Chuck Saftler, Executive Vice President, FX Networks. “I’m thrilled to be able to continue this working relationship, and I’m extremely confident we’re going to make season two the best possible viewing experience for UFC fans.”
Carwin, 12-2 in his mixed martial arts career, is unquestionably one of the hardest one-shot punchers in the entire sport. He knocked out the likes of Christian Wellisch, Gabriel Gonzaga and Frank Mir en route to winning the interim UFC heavyweight title in 2010. Now fully healthy after back surgery, the former NCAA Division II champion asked for the chance to coach the next generation of UFC stars on the longest-running sports reality TV series in the world.
“I’m very excited to get this opportunity. Coaching TUF is something I asked for and really wanted to do,” said Carwin. “I see myself being an MMA coach when my own career is over and can’t wait to start working with my Grudge Training team to help the next generation of UFC stars achieve their dreams.
“I also asked to coach against Roy Nelson. The fans know how I like to conduct myself both in and out of the Octagon, and I respect every fighter, coach, official and fan in the UFC. But I cannot respect a man like Roy Nelson – because he shows no respect himself. He is a keyboard warrior who doesn’t have the guts to talk trash to my face, but now he’s going to have to be in the same room, the same gym and finally the same Octagon as me.
“I know I am a better fighter and trainer than he is. I will prove I’m a better trainer in TUF and then, when we fight, I will hit him harder than anyone has ever hit him and teach him some respect.”
Roy Nelson, 17-7 in his MMA career, has been called one of the toughest fighters in any division. Already an experienced campaigner when he entered The Ultimate Fighter house in 2009, ‘Big Country’ defeated Kimbo Slice and Brendan Schaub to become the season 10 TUF champion, before going on to knockout Stefan Struve, Mirko Cro Cop and, most recently, Dave Herman. Nelson is the fifth TUF champion to return to the series as a coach, following Forrest Griffin, Rashad Evans, Michael Bisping and Matt Serra.
Las Vegas native Nelson said: “When I found out I was going to be a TUF coach I was like ‘Wow me!’ When I found out I was coaching against Shane Carwin I was so happy to get a chance to compete against this guy. As for being in the same room as him, I try not hang out with people that make me feel icky on the inside but, to coach TUF, I will make an exception.
“Shane Carwin can think he is the better fighter and coach, but I will do my best and try to represent the Average Joe and show my team that, with hard work, you can walk away a winner against any fighter.”
In other TUF news, filming for The Ultimate Fighter: Australia vs UK – the Smashes™ starts in Sydney, Australia this Monday with coaches George Sotiropoulos and Ross Pearson.
For more information, visit UFC.com
About the Ultimate Fighting Championship®
Universally recognized for its action-packed, can’t-miss events that have sold out some of the biggest arenas and stadiums across the globe, the UFC® is the world’s premier mixed martial arts (MMA) organization. Owned and operated by Zuffa, LLC, headquartered in Las Vegas and with offices in London, Toronto and Beijing, UFC produces more than 30 live events annually and is the largest Pay-Per-View event provider in the world. In 2011, the UFC burst into the mainstream with a landmark seven-year broadcast agreement with FOX Sports Media Group. The agreement includes four live events broadcast on the FOX network annually, with additional fight cards and thousands of hours of programming broadcast on FOX properties FX and FUEL TV. This also includes the longest-running sports reality show on television, The Ultimate Fighter®, which now airs on FX.
In addition to its reach on FOX, UFC programming is broadcast in over 149 countries and territories, to nearly one billion homes worldwide, in 20 different languages. UFC content is also distributed commercially in the United States to bars and restaurants through Joe Hand Promotions, in English throughout Canada via Premium Sports Broadcasting Inc. and in French throughout Quebec via Interbox. The UFC also connects with tens of millions of fans through its website, UFC.com, as well as social media sites Facebook and Twitter. UFC President Dana White is considered one of the most accessible and followed executives in sports, with over two million followers on Twitter. Ancillary UFC businesses include best-selling DVDs, an internationally distributed magazine, UFC.TV offering live event broadcasts and video on demand around the world, the best-selling UFC Undisputed® video game franchise distributed by THQ, and a new franchise in development with EA, UFC GYM®, UFC Fight Club affinity program, UFC Fan Expo® festivals, branded apparel and trading cards.
FX is the flagship general entertainment basic cable network from Fox. Launched in June of 1994, FX is carried in more than 98 million homes. The diverse schedule includes a growing roster of critically acclaimed and award-winning hit dramas series including Sons of Anarchy,Justified and American Horror Story, and acclaimed hit comedy series It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, The League, Louie, Archer, Wilfred, Brand X with Russell Brand, Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell and Legit. Its library of acquired box-office hit movies is unmatched by any ad-supported television network. The network’s other offerings include the acquired hit series Two and a Half Men and How I Met Your Mother, and live sports with UFC and NCAA football.