Middleweight Chris Leben isn’t the only TUF contestant to insert bodily fluids into the equation but he’s definitely the first. As fans likely remember, Leben relieved himself on fellow fighter Jason Thacker’s bed. Worse yet, the incident came on the first night of taping, setting Leben up as a “bad boy” for years to come. One of the lowest points in TUF history came on Season 5 when contestants Marlon Sims and Noah Thomas decided to throw down in the backyard. Equally surprising, little was done to stop the scrap and in some cases the clash was encouraged. When UFC President Dana White caught wind of it the outspoken executive was understandably upset and embarrassed, wasting little time to take action by throwing each man out of the competition. It’s not uncommon for contestants to be replaced on TUF. After all, injuries occur as do instances of misbehavior or the occasional desire to drop out of the competition. However, it’s a different story altogether when talking about TUF coaches. As fans likely remember, Hall of Fame fighter Tito Ortiz was pulled from the show after finding out he needed neck surgery. Rich Franklin was named as replacement and finished out the show before going on to finish opposing coach Chuck Liddell shortly thereafter. TUF 7’s Jesse Taylor distinguished himself as a fighter to watch based both on his ability in the Octagon and colorful personality outside of it. However, the often unintentionally funny Taylor did anything but produce laughter after throwing away his shot at a six-figure UFC contract by going on a drunken rampage in Las Vegas after taping had concluded. He busted a limo’s window out and acted unruly in general, shouting profanities and harassing women while claiming status as a UFC fighter. For the past eight months fans wondered whether favorite B.J. Penn would end his retirement and return to the ring. This week, the world learned “The Prodigy” will indeed give it another go in the Octagon, but not at lightweight as expected or even at welterweight. Rather, Penn will drop down to 145 pounds for the first time in his storied career and face Frankie Edgar on TUF 19.
This week’s episode of the
Ultimate Fighter 18 delivered a handful of eye-opening moments including, of course, a shocking upset win involving relative neophyte Julianna Pena submitting seasoned veteran Shayna Baszler. The fallout from the defeat sent into an emotional frenzy ranging from threats to rival coach Ronda Rousey Miesha Tate to tearful confessions to the TUF cameras. The entire episode was full of surprises, though fans might be accustomed to such being true regarding the groundbreaking reality show. (Photos by USA Today Sports Images)