As reported by the Los Angeles Times, UFC president Dana White has announced that light heavyweight champ Jon Jones and trash-talk champion Chael Sonnen will be the head coaches for the 17th season of The Ultimate Fighter reality show. TUF 17 will introduce new fighters to the promotion’s middleweight division, and the final, to be headlined by the two big-name coaches, is set for April 27. “Jon accepted. He knows the fans want to see this fight,” Dana is quoted as saying.
Shooting will begin on October 29 in Las Vegas, but the reality show will only air starting in January. Jones announced over Twitter that he will be going to Vegas next week to begin his commitments related to the TV program.
The rift between Jon Jones and Chael Sonnen began shortly after the former middleweight challenger was outmatched by Anderson Silva, moved up a weight division and directed his ire at the champion there. Jones promptly ignored him, as the “Spider” did at first, but the pressure from fans and Dana White spoke louder.
In the latest episode of their feud, Chael took to Twitter to pester Jones about the armbar he suffered at the hands of Vitor Belfort late last December. “You’re not the best, you’re just the next. Fix up your arm, you’re going to need it,” said Sonnen, sending a clear message to the light heavyweight king, who has owned the belt since March 2011. Jones has successfully defended his title on four occasions: against Quinton Jackson, Lyoto Machida, Rashad Evans and Belfort.
What do you think, is Chael Sonnen as much of an underdog as Stephan Bonnar was at UFC Rio? Let us know what you think below.