The Ultimate Fighter 13: Team Lesnar vs. Team dos Santos premiered Wendesday night on Spike TV, featuring heavyweight contenders Brock Lesnar and Junior dos Santos as coaches of a welterweight cast vying to become the latest Ultimate Fighter winner.
UFC President Dana White enters the gym and tells the eager cast of 14 welterweights that they won’t need to fight to get it into the house as in recent seasons and that the wild card will return, pitting two opening round losers head-to-head for a spot in the quarterfinals.
White then introduces the former heavyweight champ Lesnar and top-contender dos Santos as their coaches.
Next, Lesnar and dos Santos lead the fighters through workouts as they look to make their picks for the impending draft. While grappling, Myles Jury hurts his knee, but believes he’ll be able to fight on.
Lesnar wins a coin flip and opts to pick the first fighter, leaving dos Santos to make the first matchup, and the following teams are chosen:
Team Lesnar: Len Bentley, Charlie Rader, Tony Ferguson, Clay Harvison, Myles Jury, Chris Cope, Nordin Asrih
Team dos Santos: Shamar Bailey, Ryan McGillivray, Javier Torres, Ramsey Nijem, Zach Davis, Mick Bowman, Keon Caldwell
The fighters then head of to the TUF house and get settled in, before returning to the gym for their first training sessions with their teams.
After a Team dos Santos workout, it’s Team Lesnar’s turn and Jury gets the bad news that his ACL is torn and he won’t be able to continue in the competition. After a talk with Dana White, Jury heads home and is replaced by Chuck O’Neil.
Then it’s fight time, as dos Santos choose top-pick Shamar Bailey to face Nordin Asrih, Lesnar’s last pick.
Both fighters are confident in their skills and have their teams behind them, while Dana cautions anything can happen, but Bailey easily controls Asrih with his wrestling for two, five-minute rounds and earns a unanimous decision to advance to the quarterfinals.
White isn’t thrilled with the fight and its lack of action, but Team dos Santos is happy to claim an early 1-0 lead on the season.
Pictured: The Ultimate Fighter 13 cast