Coming this January, the spotlight will shine on a new class of hungry, talented and determined fighters as The Ultimate Fighter® Nations: Canada vs. Australia showcases the newest crop of fighters on the Ultimate Fighting Championship® (UFC®) organization’s storied reality series. Series veterans Patrick Côté (20-8) and Kyle Noke (20-6-1) lead a cast of welterweight (170lbs) and middleweight (185lbs) fighters, as Canada and Australia go head-to-head in the fifth international edition of the show.
Eight Aussies made their way to the Great White North to live and train together with eight Canadians in the most challenging sports tournament on television. Filmed just north of Montreal, the fighters spend six grueling weeks competing and fine-tuning their Mixed Martial Arts skills for a shot at a six-figure contract with the UFC®.
Watch here to meet the newest cast of Ultimate Fighters: http://www.ufc.com/media/TUF-Nations–Meet-the-Fighters
“If guys thought fighting in the toughest tournament on television was hard, imagine how they feel doing it with a whole country on their shoulders,” said UFC President Dana White. “These country vs. country seasons of The Ultimate Fighter are awesome because not only do these guys deal with living in a house with other fighters, training twice a day and putting everything on the line for their dream opportunity, but now it’s even more personal – it’s patriotic. Next season, we lined up one of the deepest talent pools with some of the toughest up and coming fighters and put national bragging rights on the line along with the UFC contract, as Canada and Australia go head-to-head to kick off 2014.”
Below is a full list of competitors by country and in alphabetical order (name, professional MMA record, age, fighting out of):
Coached by Patrick Côté
Coached by Kyle Noke
|Olivier Aubin-Mercier, 4-0, 24, Montreal||Chris Indich, 6-1, 26, Perth, WA|
|Matthew Desroches, 4-0, 21, Fredericton||Jake Matthews, 6-0, 19, Melbourne|
|Kajan Johnson, 19-10-1, 29, Montreal||Brendan O’Reilly, 5-0, 26, Brisbane, QLD|
|Chad Laprise, 7-0, 27, London, Ont.||Richard Walsh, 7-1, 24, Sydney|
|Luke Harris, 10-2, 36, St. Albert, Alb.||Vik Grujic, 6-2, 36, Melbourne|
|Nordine Taleb, 8-2, 32, Montreal||Daniel Kelly, 6-0, 36, Melbourne|
|Elias Theodorou, 8-0, 25, Toronto||Tyler Manawaroa, 10-0, 19, Brisbane, QLD|
|Sheldon Westcott, 8-1, 29, St. Albert, Alb.||Zein Saliba, 4-0, 25, Sydney|
A nine-year veteran of the UFC, Côté appeared on the reality series in 2006 when he joined a cast of UFC alumni in The Ultimate Fighter: The Comeback. Originally from Rimouski, Quebec, the bilingual fighter was the first Canadian to reach the series final, and remains only one of two Canadian fighters’ to have done so. Côté then went on a five-fight win streak in the UFC, earned a shot at then-UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva.
Noke, a native of Dubbo, New South Wales, joined the reality series ranks when he fought his way onto season 11, The Ultimate Fighter®: Team Liddell vs. Team Ortiz. He was Hall of Famer Liddell’s No.1 pick, and reached the quarterfinals. He has since gone 4-2 in the UFC, including an impressive Submission of the Night win over Chris Camozzi and a devastating KO last time out over Charlie Brenneman.
The series will have 12 episodes, Wednesday’s on FOX Sports 1, with each episode’s winner advancing in the single-elimination tournament, and culminating in a three-hour finale.
Many of today’s most recognizable names in the UFC have emerged from The Ultimate Fighter series, which produced champions such as Forrest Griffin, Rashad Evans and Matt Serra and season winners Michael Bisping, Ryan Bader and Nate Diaz. This will be Australia’s second participation in the series, having taken part in the second international edition battling the U.K. in The Ultimate Fighter The Smashes: U.K. vs. Australia.
For more show information, bios, videos and photos, visit ultimatefighter.com and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter under our new name @UltimateFighter or on Facebook.com/TUF.
About the Ultimate Fighting Championship®
Universally recognized for its action-packed, can’t-miss events that have sold out some of the biggest arenas and stadiums across the globe, the UFC® is the world’s premier mixed martial arts (MMA) organization. Owned and operated by Zuffa, LLC, headquartered in Las Vegas and with offices in London, Toronto, Beijing and Sao Paulo, UFC produces more than 35 live events annually. The UFC is the largest pay-per-view event provider in the world. In 2012, the UFC burst into the mainstream with a landmark seven-year broadcast agreement with FOX Sports Media Group for live events and thousands of hours of programming including the longest-running sports reality show on television, The Ultimate Fighter®, moving to FOX Sports 1 in September 2013.
In addition to its reach on FOX, UFC programming is broadcast in over 145 countries, to nearly 800 million TV households worldwide, in 28 different languages. UFC content is also distributed commercially in the United States to bars and restaurants through Joe Hand Promotions, in English throughout Canada via Premium Sports Broadcasting Inc. and Australia via Main Event and in French throughout Quebec via Interbox. The UFC also connects with tens of millions of fans through its website, UFC.com, as well as social media sites Facebook and Twitter. UFC President Dana White is considered one of the most accessible and followed executives in sports, with nearly 2.5 million followers on Twitter. UFC businesses also include over 90 UFC GYM® locations in 28 US states, UFC FIT™, an in-home fitness and nutrition program, UFC 360, the internationally distributed magazine, UFC.TV offering live event broadcasts and video on demand around the world, a new videogame franchise in development with EA, best-selling DVDs, UFC Fight Club®, UFC Fan Expo®, branded apparel and trading cards.
About FOX Sports 1
FOX Sports 1 is America’s new national multi-sport channel that launched on August 17 in approximately 90 million homes and boasts nearly 5,000 hours of live event, news and original programming annually. The channel has several pillar sports: UFC, college basketball and football, MLB (in 2014), NASCAR, NFL (ancillary programs), USGA events including the U.S. Open (2015) and soccer. College football is highlighted by regular season coverage of Big 12, Pac-12 and Conference USA games, while the college basketball spotlight shines on the Big East, Big 12, Pac-12 and Conference USA and the Big East men’s basketball tournament. Starting in 2014, select MLB League Championship Series and Division Series games as well as regular season games are coming to the channel. FOX Sports 1 also carries select NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events beginning in 2015; NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races; the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race; and all Speedweeks coverage, including Daytona 500 Qualifying, Sprint Unlimited at Daytona, (2014, 2017-22) the Budweiser Duel, and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NCWTS Practice and Qualifying sessions. Additionally, FOX Sports 1 carries NASCAR RACEDAY, NASCAR VICTORY LANE and RACE HUB shows. The channel also carries the world’s most prolific club soccer competitions, like UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League and CONCACAF Champions League, along with the world’s oldest soccer competition, the FA Cup; plus CONCACAF Gold Cup; CONCACAF Qualifiers, EURO 2016 Qualifiers; 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers; FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2015 and 2019; FIFA Men’s World Cup in 2018 and 2022. In addition to Saturday pay-per-view preliminary cards, Wednesday nights are home to the UFC with UFC TONIGHT, live events and THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER. In Feb. 2014, FOX Sports 1 partners with The Jockey Club for newly created package of nationally televised races featuring the leading horses in the country. FOX SPORTS LIVE is FOX Sports 1’s flagship 24/7 news, opinion and highlights program, providing around the clock coverage through regularly scheduled programs, hourly updates and an information rich ticker. Original programs include: FOX FOOTBALL DAILY, CROWD GOES WILD, a new live sports entertainment talk show hosted by Regis Philbin; and the groundbreaking BEING: documentary franchise. FOX Sports GO, a groundbreaking authenticated mobile sports experience for iPhone, iPad, Android devices and the web, serves as the channel’s digital extension. The app offers more than 1,100 live games and events from cross FOX Sports, FOX Sports 1, FOX Sports 2 and FOX Sports’ 22 regional sports networks, as well as scores, highlights, news, stats and analysis. For more information visit www.FOXSports.com/FOXSports1.
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Coming up next: UFC Fight Night is LIVE on FOX SPORTS 1 Friday, December 6 from Brisbane, Australia at 9 PM ET/6 PM ET Click here for more