It must be something in the water.
Sources close to the fighter have told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that Team Jorge Gurgel welterweight Matt Brown (7-6 MMA, 0-0 UFC), an Ohio fighter who recently headlined an Indianapolis UFL event against UFC veteran Chris Lytle, has been chosen as a cast member for “The Ultimate Fighter 7.”
Brown is the third Team Gurgel fighter that MMAjunkie.com has exclusively revealed as a cast member.
“The Ultimate Fighter 7,” which debuts April 2 on Spike TV, features UFC light heavyweight champion Quinton Jackson and season-one winner Forrest Griffin as coaches. Sixteen middleweight fighters vie for a UFC contract in a tournament-style competition. The show begins taping today in Las Vegas.
Brown, normally a 170-pounder, will jump a weight class to compete on the show. He split his time training between Team Gurgel and IMB of Columbus, one of central Ohio’s top training centers, to prepare for the show. He’s recently been working with Renzo Gracie fighters David Branch and Nardu Debrah.
Perhaps the biggest victory of Brown’s career is a second-round TKO of “The Ultimate Fighter 6? standout Matt Arroyo at a NovembEr 2006 “Real Fighting Championships” event in Tampa, Fla. He also delivered Douglas Lima (6-1) the only loss of his career at a February 2007 International Sport Combat Federation show in Atlanta.
Brown was first introduced to MMAjunkie.com readers when he and Lytle headlined an Aug. 11 United Fight League event at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. Lytle was originally slated to face Justin Weiman, but he suffered an injury and was replaced by Tristan Yunker. However, the UFC, which granted Lytle permission to compete outside the UFC for the hometown event, nixed the fight. The UFL finally signed Brown, which earned the UFC’s green light.
After a back-and-forth ground battle, Brown ultimately suffered a second-round submission loss (via guillotine choke). However, after the fight, Lytle raved about Brown, saying he was one of the toughest and most relentless opponents the veteran fighter had ever faced.
Brown will be joined on the cast by fellow Team Gurgel fighters Luke Zachrich (7-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) and Prince Mclean (4-5), as well as former UFC fighter Steve Byrnes (6-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC) and C.B. Dollaway (6-0 MMA, 0-0 UFC).
For the latest news about “The Ultimate Fighter 7,” check out the UFC Rumors section of MMAjunkie.com.
(Note: Due to a handful of fighters named “Matt Brown” competing in MMA, none of the fight databases are correct. Sherdog lists Brown’s record as 5-6; FC Fighter has it as 8-6. According to reps from Brown’s camp, the fighter is actually 7-6.)