Recapping The Ultimate Fighter, frankly, is too fun not to do. So that’s what we’ll do over the course of the next three months, each Wednesday night after the 10 p.m. ET showing on Spike.
At least, most nights, it’ll be at 10 p.m. — the premiere was delayed a few minutes by a long break in the UFC Fight Night card followed by a power outage.
Coming into the season, the rumor mill has claimed that something goes awry and coach Tito Ortiz has to drop out, replaced by ever-loyal UFC soldier Rich Franklin on the show and in the coach’s fight that comes afterwards. If so, rival coach Chuck Liddell is throwing everyone off the trail. He spent most of a conference call this week talking about how much he was looking forward to beating up Tito, saying Tito not only talked about his personal life but made stuff up.
UFC and Spike officials guard these secrets like Roy Nelson guards his spot in a buffet line, so we won’t get any sort of confirmation one way or the other. When I asked Dana White about it recently, he told me I’d just have to watch and see. OK, then.
In any case, we can count on a lot of Liddell-Ortiz back-and-forth during the season, which probably isn’t a good thing. That got a little tedious last season with Rampage Jackson and Rashad Evans, and they’re both a lot funnier than Liddell and Ortiz.
But we won’t hear much of it this week because we have to get through 14 fights. They brought 28 middleweights to the training center, but only 14 will make it into the house and the collective consciousness of UFC fans over the next three months. And here they go …
Continue reading “‘The Ultimate Fighter’: Season 11, Episode 1: 14-fight whirlwind”
HEADLINES – New FIFA rankings! Spain, Brazil, Netherlands unchanged in top three. Portugal leaps past Italy and Germany for fourth. Egypt surges to 14th. But the big news is in CONCACAF: USA 16th, Mexico 17th. Mixed bag for the USA’s World Cup opponents: England swapped places with France to take seventh. Slovenia slipped to 29th. Algeria is up five places to 27th. (FIFA) – Big upset in Key Biscayne’s Sony Ericsson Open, one of tennis’ near-majors: Tomas Berdych ousted Roger Federer. Tennis writer Bonnie D. Ford says via Twitter that the match was long but far too sloppy to be … Continue reading Happy Wednesday
The NLL (National Lacrosse League) is a lot like hockey with carpet instead of ice and a different type of stick. And like NHL players, NLL players occasionally drop the gloves and throw their fists in fights governed by codes both unofficial and official — in the NLL’s case, written in exquisite detail (see the rules in PDF). Sometimes, those fights get so out of hand that they migrate from the lacrosse blogosphere to Deadspin. Everyone involved was punished, though the “game misconduct” penalties might not mean much with all of this happening so late in the game. The Boston … Continue reading Randy Couture, Kimbo Slice … and lacrosse? Closer than you think
– The Champions League continues today at 2:30 p.m. ET with Bayern Munich-Manchester United (FSN) and Lyon-Bordeaux (FSC), but Wednesday’s action will have a somber tone as CSKA Moscow takes the field two days after a subway bombing that killed 39 people. The club has asked to wear black armbands (Reuters). (TV listings – Soccer America) – CSKA Moscow’s basketball team, where Americans Trajan Langdon and J.R. Holden have carved out long careers, is in action today in the Euroleague quarterfinals against Spain’s Caja Laboral. CSKA leads the best-of-5 series 2-0. (Euroleague) – Back to soccer’s European elite — Chelsea’s … Continue reading Tuesday’s headlines: Moscow mourns, Man U in Munich