Light-heavyweight champ Jon Jones, title challenger Chael Sonnen and UFC President Dana White attended a special media conference call Wednesday afternoon to officially announce their coaching positions for ‘The Ultimate Fighter 17′ show.
During the conference call, White spoke about the decision to put Jones and Sonnen as the coaches for the next season.
” Basically, we got the word that Jon was out and couldn’t fight till April, so it made sense for him to do ‘The Ultimate Fighter’. Machida can fight, Hendo can fight, Gusta and Shogun are gonna fight in December. Everything will keep on moving. Obviously Chael wanted this fight, the fans wanted the fight. I will let Jon speak for himself.”
When asked why Henderson was overlooked for a title shot:
“Dan Henderson had the opportunity and then he got injured. White retaliated “He got injured and now Jones is injured and out for months. They are going to coach the show. The thing is guys we can’t sit around when guys get injured. We had to pull the trigger.”
“It made sense, these guys will coach ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ and then they will fight and whoever is next in line will get a shot at the title. ”
White was also asked whether the choice to bring in Jones and Sonnen on TUF was to boost ratings.
“The fact that everybody says we will be doing this for the ratings means they expect it to be great so thats great for us!”
It was also announced on the call that the reality show will be officially moving away from their current Friday night slot although they would not confirm what day it will be moving to.
“The show is going to move off of Friday night.” Schaffer said “We cannot confirm the day right now. It is moving to a weekday. I cannot confirm but I should say that Spike TV should watch their asses now”
Schaffer also expressed his excitement to have two of the UFC’s biggest PPV draws coaching the reality show “We have very big expectations for the ratings. It will be epic.”
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