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Hideous heavyweights on The Ultimate Fighter

By Zach Arnold | September 23, 2009

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That fight between James McSweeney and Wes Shivers was simply atrocious to watch. When I made a proclamation last week that the heavyweight fights on this season of The Ultimate Fighter would be bad, I didn’t imagine they could be this bad. At least last week’s fight had someone juicing red big time.

Shivers smothered McSweeney and did nothing with him on the mat. He should have finished that guy in two minutes. McSweeney, other than leg kicks and a few goofy striking spots, did nothing of note against Shivers and should have finished his opponent off in 2 minutes (when Shivers already started gassing out).

I’ll give credit to Spike for heating up a “Rashad vs. Roy Nelson” angle, given that they pulled the trigger already on Nelson vs. Kimbo Slice for next week’s show. I agree with Michael David Smith that next week’s show will be the biggest fighter ever in the history of TUF, but after that fight where Nelson will likely win — then what?

We should all be praying that the fights get better on this show because the first two weeks have not given fans a lot of hope.

Topics: Media, MMA, UFC, Zach Arnold | 39 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

39 Responses to “Hideous heavyweights on The Ultimate Fighter”

  1. Michaelthebox says:

    FWIW, I had Madsen, Shivers, Wagner and McSweeney all in the bottom 6 of my preshow rankings. Of those four, Madsen was the only one who had any potential of not sucking, and he might be more entertaining against somebody who can put up a fight.

    The fights should get much better as the chaff is eliminated.

  2. Detective Roadblock says:

    They’ve got some real bums on this show. Why do all these guys come in in awful shape. There is no excuse for te heavyweights. They don’t have to cit. They should be in camp for 5-6 weeks before going on the show so they can peak a it is filmed.

    Also the coaches shouldn’t pick the fights. It would be better to make it a tournament base in rankings and have Dana dole out the matchups.

    TUF sucks. I haven’t watched since season one and this is why. I’m interested in Kimbo vs Nelson though and will watch next week.

  3. PizzaChef says:

    I’m only watching this season because it’s available same day where I live (finally) and to see Kimbo. I have not watched TUF since mid season of the 6th one cause TUF really started to suck.

  4. jr says:

    Shivers played in the NFL in 1973 judging by his cardio. Can they please stop wearing the TUF necklaces~! already. It makes it look like they shop at American Eagle

  5. Joseph says:

    The show has terrible talent. More for ratings IMO. I laughed at all those who said the UFC HW division was going to be stacked after this season of TUF, LOL.

  6. Alan Conceicao says:

    I missed last nights episode (its on the DVR, so all I can say to Roy Nelson/Kimbo Slice is LOLOLOLOLOL. I’m guessing we get Kimbo coming back after someone else’s injury.

  7. The only thing that can rescue the show now in my eyes is if Kimbo knocks out Nelson. This also would make a lot of sense as they really stressed how good a fighter Nelson is.

    Maybe it would not make a lot of sense from a talent point of view but since they wanted to sell us the 10th season as the biggest ever they really must have something up the sleeve.

    What Rampage should have been doing from day one is cardio training, cardio training, cardio training. And if I remember it right the last time he was a TUF trainer his fighters had the same problem.

    If you want to see some awesome fights don’t miss the K-1 Final Elimination this weekend! Could be one of the best ever…

  8. Dave2 says:

    Rashad just had to give Kimbo the hardest possible matchup. Roy Nelson is going to trounce Kimbo. Unless Kimbo’s punchers chance works out for him. And it’s not like Roy Nelson has a weak chin afaik. It wasn’t exactly easy for Andrei Arlovski to knock him out. I wouldn’t be surprised if Nelson knocked out Kimbo since Kimbo’s chin looks like it may be suspect. And if Nelson doesn’t, he can easily sub Kimbo.

  9. Ultimo Santa says:

    Why is Roy Nelson even on this show?! Shouldn’t he have just been added to the UFC HW division? It’s almost ridiculous to have someone of his caliber fighting rookies.

    Yeah he’ll probably kimura Kimbo – but so what? All this match-up does is take away the chance for Kimbo to fight someone of his own skill/experience level and build momentum.

  10. Ultimo Santa says:

    Not to go off-topic, but why is everyone online ignoring the fact that Rampage Jackson suddenly retired?

  11. Chris says:

    I think the fights will get better once we see some of the more seasoned guys fight, starting with Roy Nelson. Then you also have fighters like Brendan Schaub, Demicio Rogers, and Justin Wren that are legitimate prospects.

  12. Mr. Dream says:

    The show reminds me of early UFC, where fighters gas early and hard. I can\’t say much in defense of the early fighters, but typically more than half of the cast is not even UFN quality.

    This fight probably would\’ve headlined an Elite XC card if they were still around. I imagine that\’s why the UFC added Big Country on the show. He had mentioned in the past (as did many) that he wanted a shot at Slice.

    Roy\’s on TUF so that the fans who are unfamiliar with him wouldn\’t just laugh when they saw him for the first time on a PPV.

  13. Alan Conceicao says:

    Not to go off-topic, but why is everyone online ignoring the fact that Rampage Jackson suddenly retired?

    Already discussed below, and more to the point, no one believes its permanent.

  14. Preach says:

    CroCop apparently called it quits too…

  15. Fluyid says:

    “What Rampage should have been doing from day one is cardio training, cardio training, cardio training.”

    How long are these teams together before the fights start?

    I have always figured that they have like 1-2 days together before they start fighting, and then only a day or so passes before the next fight.

  16. Mark says:

    If the show is on the up and up there was no way to dramatically wait until the last possible moment to finally have Kimbo-Nelson, people would be calling it a worked show more than they already do. It’s the only money fight in the entire season and it’s one that’s going to embarrass Kimbo badly, but we all knew that going in. Take down and kimura within 30 seconds I predict. And yeah, he’ll come back for a semi-finals bye. And lose again. Hopefully we’ll get a Lebenesque scene of him bleeding and sobbing outside after he loses the second time. “I miss Gary!”

  17. Fluyid says:

    I’m hearing that Bo Cantrell and Kimbo come in as injury replacements and fight in the semi-finals.

  18. Mark says:

    Kimbo vs. Cantrel II! In a lesson of “be careful of what you shit on, because it might come to your promotion one day.”

    I think this whole season is like a history lesson for newer MMA fans who only know of respectable heavyweight divisions in the post-Sylvia era. They get education of how shitty it used to be sometimes without having to put over fighters you don’t own anymore on Unleashed like Tank, Varelans and Ferrozo.

  19. 45 Huddle says:

    Dare I say that this season is still filled with a bunch of guys who could be ranked in the Top 50 of MMA Heavyweights?

    Heavyweights are either super exciting or extremely boring. There is typically not much in between. And the level of athlete is not very high.

    Right now the UFC has the best HW Division in the sport (in terms of depth), and yet it is still weak compared to the rest of their division. And the gapping holes in some of their “better” fighters is beyond comical.

    The division has actually gotten much better over the last 3 years, and it still is subpar. This TUF show is just showing how weak it really is. I personally prefer LHW to Feather…. Those are the best divisions to watch on a constant basis.

  20. Dave says:

    lol, I could be a top 50 heavyweight at this point, all I’d have to do is pound out some schlub on a show that Sherdog or BE cover, 45.

  21. Alan Conceicao says:

    If Cantrell ends up on TUF 10, then we might as well scuttle the sport. It will have officially entered the “No Hope Zone”.

  22. 45 Huddle says:

    I like to think that what happens on TUF stays on TUF…. For the most part at least. There is a guy like Junie Browning who don’t have the skills but make it onto the main card of a TUF Finale.

    TUF is typically treated like entertainment and the UFC regular cards are typically treated more like winning matters. At the end of the day, TUF’s main objective is to produce 3 to 5 solid prospects that can at least have some moderate success in the UFC.

    As long as this season can do that, it has served it’s overall purpose.

  23. Mark says:

    Kimbo is guaranteed a UFC spot even if the fight lasts 2 seconds. He’s beloved by new fans who don’t realize yet that looking like a bad ass doesn’t mean you’re an elite fighter. If you saw GSP on the street you wouldn’t assume he’s one of the greatest fighters in the world. And you wouldn’t assume Kimbo would drop to a fallaway punch by somebody with pink hair.

    But Kimbo will get a big contract and at the very least be their free TV headliner until he loses 4 times in a row. Although Alan’s Couture vs. Slice PPV main event idea sounds entirely realistic.

  24. IceMuncher says:

    I’ll need to see the rest of the fights before I call the season a failure. Every season has it’s fair share of complete scrubs. Season 5 had Diaz, Lauzon, Maynard, Gamburyan, and Miller, but it also had the likes of Sims, Weems, and Wang.

    If Schoonover, Schaub, Wren, and the rest of the top fighters suck, then I’ll throw this season under a bus.

  25. 45 Huddle says:

    So they this season gives us Nelson, Kimbo, Schoonover, Schaub, & Wren as at least guys the UFC can use to promote. That is a successful season.

    And I think people forget how bad some of the fights were on the previous seasons. Rashad Evans was downright horrible in a few of his snoozefests. Bisping beat up a bunch of scrubs to win TUF 3 (including the finals). Koscheck was a wet blanket during his fight with Leben.

    Trust me, I’m not defending this crop of Heavyweights. The Heavyweight Division in general isn’t that good, and this season is an example of that. But I think people see Evans & Koscheck today and forget how ugly their fights were on the show. It isn’t that much different then what we are seeing from this season either.

  26. Jesse says:

    IceMuncher:

    Watching Wang, who had a black belt in BJJ, fight completely on his feet because of his ego was even more frustrating than last nights fight. Ugh!!!!

  27. Ivan Trembow says:

    I’m looking forward to next week’s ratings bonanza, as the UFC and Spike TV have gone from publicly mocking Kimbo’s ratings-drawing power in press releases and public statements to fully using that ratings-drawing power for themselves.

    Also, the whole con-game of Kimbo having to win TUF to prove himself as a UFC fighter is officially over, as Dana White told the Los Angeles Times that Kimbo will definitely be fighting in the UFC in the future. White also hilariously said, “No, never. The ratings do not influence our decision. The guy can either fight or not” … which clearly explains Junie Browning’s continued UFC employment.

    http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/sports_blog/2009/09/kimbo-slice-has-ufc-staying-power.html

  28. Ivan Trembow says:

    (and the fact that they signed Kimbo to a contract in the first place)

  29. Mark says:

    It doesn’t surprise me at all. This was a face-saving move since Dana so famously said when Elite shutdown that all he thought Kimbo was good for was a TUF contestant and he guaranteed he’d lose on it. So if he automatically put him on pay per view, his whole “everybody who doesn’t make me money is a piece of shit until they make me money” attitude would be exposed as a gimmick to those who damn near worship him. I’ll bet he wishes he never said that so he could hotshot Lesnar-Kimbo to pay per view right now. But if he did that it would make Strikeforce’s pathetic gimmicks of Herschel Walker and “Battle Of The MMA Wives” look respectable.

  30. 45 Huddle says:

    I love it. Dana White is a man of his word, and somehow that is looked upon negatively. He said Kimbo would have to go on TUF to get into the UFC, and that is exactly what he required him to do.

    Damned if he does, damned if he doesn’t. If he passed up on Kimbo, the same people would say he was being stupid for passing up on such a draw.

    It’s like FOX News with Obama. No matter what he does, they will find something wrong to complain about.

  31. Joseph says:

    LOL at 45 Huddle, Dana is NOT a man of his word, he is a promoter. By definition, he lies for a living.

    He said Kimbo would have to WIN TUF to make it in the UFC. Now, Kimbo’s requirement’s is that he has to be breathing to make it into the UFC.

  32. 45 Huddle says:

    The basic premise still remains in tact. Kimbo had to go through TUF in order to get into the UFC. And that’s exactly what he did.

    And for a guy who lies for a living,he sure as heck tells the truth on his competition’s pitfuls all the time.

  33. Ivan Trembow says:

    Creative headline of the day: “UFC president takes the high road on Jackson’s ‘retirement'”

    I suppose that is correct if by “the high road,” they mean that after a fighter announces his quasi-retirement due to having been publicly insulted and mocked by his boss, then the boss’ response is to then publicly say that the fighter is “acting like a baby.” So, yes, if that is “the high road,” then he is certainly taking “the high road.” Speaking of which, that phrase brings back funny memories of a Dennis Green press conference.

  34. Ivan Trembow says:

    Wow, I really knocked it out of the park with my grammar in that post… lol

  35. Oh Yeah says:

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Slice actually wins.

    Rashad has said good things about him (despite him not being on the team), apparently they have invited him to Jackson’s. Crazier things have happened in MMA than Kimbo beating Roy Nelson, and he has a decent chance as long as it stays upright. Big Belly Nelson isn’t the most nimble fighter.

    That being said, I will be less than impressed if Kimbo gets stomped and continues to stink it up on the main card of PPVs. But I doubt that will happen. Chuck Liddell isn’t even a standalone headliner anymore after losing a few.

  36. Mark says:

    The basic premise still remains in tact. Kimbo had to go through TUF in order to get into the UFC. And that’s exactly what he did.

    It depends on what your definition of “is” is.

    Creative headline of the day: “UFC president takes the high road on Jackson’s ‘retirement’”

    I suppose that is correct if by “the high road,” they mean that after a fighter announces his quasi-retirement due to having been publicly insulted and mocked by his boss, then the boss’ response is to then publicly say that the fighter is “acting like a baby.” So, yes, if that is “the high road,” then he is certainly taking “the high road.” Speaking of which, that phrase brings back funny memories of a Dennis Green press conference.

    He’s judging by Dana White standards of what dignity is, I’m sure. This is more dignified than how he reacted to Tito leaving I’ll admit. So yes, by L’enfant terrible’s usual “FUCK YOU MOTHERFUCKER YOU CAN’T FUCKING LEAVE I OWN YOUR MOTHERFUCK FUCKING SOUL MOTHERFUCKING FUCK FUCK FUCK MOTHERFUCKER!”‘s standards, this is the high road.

  37. MMAMoneyLine says:

    I just hope the fight is competitive. If Roy subs him at the end of the 2nd after a solid effort put forth by Slice I’ll be happy.

  38. robert says:

    the fight was god awful mcsweeeny had been training withe jackson camp for a year after being a kickboxer, that was embarassing. Shivers had to cut to make 265, I think he on the show or online I can’t recall that he hits the ring about 280.

  39. Zack says:

    I haven’t seen the episode yet, but does this sum up your thoughts?

    http://i38.tinypic.com/2h6r4fa.jpg

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