TUF is a reality television show and MMA tournament , originating from the U.S. , and produced by Spike TV and the Ultimate Fighting Championship . On this show, professional mixed martial arts fighters that have yet to make a name for themselves are situated in a house outside of Vegas , Nevada and contend against one and other for the title of TUF , winning a six-figure, multi-fight contract with the UFC .
For the first four seasons, prospect UFC fighters were selected in two weight classes . The fighters are divided into two teams, irrespective of weight category , each team coached by a current UFC headliner . The teams then compete (in a way which varies by season) to determine which team would have the right to pair one of their own fighters against an opposition of their choice in the same weight category to an mixed martial arts fight , the loser being eliminated from tournament . At the end of a season, the two leftover fighters of weight category class are placed in a MMA , where the title of TUF is given to the winner. Seasons five to seven, ten and eleven have only featured one weight category each.
The show features the ongoing preparations each fighter makes to train for competition and the interactions they have with each other living under the same roof. Day-to-day events on the series are taken care of by UFC president Dana White.
The contestants get some very cool MMA Shorts to wear supplied by TapouT Shorts. If you haven’t heard of TapouT Shorts before you need to check them out!
With the exception of the season finales, fights on The Ultimate Fighter are approved by the Nevada Athletic Commission as exhibition matches and don’t count for or against a fighter’s professional record. This is done to keep the results from going public before the air date .
The winners of the first three seasons of The Ultimate Fighter competition, and certain runners-up depending on their performance in their competition finals, get the touted “six-figure” contract to fight in the Ultimate Fighting Championship . These contracts are specifically three-year contracts with a guaranteed first year. Each year consists of three fights, the first year’s purse per fight consists of $12,000 guaranteed with a $12,000 win incentive (a maximum of $24,000 per fight), the second year’s purse per fight is $16,000 with a $16,000 win bonus (a maximum of $32,000 per fight) and the third year’s purse per fight is at $22,000 with a $22,000 win bonus (a maximum of $44,000 per fight). A TUF winner who goes 9-0 can earn $300,000 total on the contract, but only $150,000 is guaranteed for all three years if 9 fights are fought.1
Those that have not won the competition can still fight in the UFC . Their contracts however are not the same as the six-figure deal above.
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