Report: ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ Ditches Live Format, Remains on Friday Night for Upcoming Season



UFC President Dana White said that changes were coming to “The Ultimate Fighter,” and he has delivered on that promise.

According to a Yahoo! Sports report, “TUF” will return to the taped format the reality show used for its first 14 seasons on Spike when it returns in September. With its transition to FX, “TUF 15” was the first iteration of the series to feature live fights at the end of each episode.

The show will remain in its Friday time slot, however, but White told Yahoo! that could change if he is not satisfied with the ratings for Season 16. “TUF” had previously aired on Wednesday nights on Spike, but when the UFC reached a deal with Fox, Friday nights were the only available slot for the program on FX.

Ratings for the show peaked with the season premiere, when “TUF Live” drew 1.3 million viewers to the network. The numbers declined over the course of the season, with five different episodes failing to reach 1 million viewers. Despite those seemingly disappointing figures, White told Yahoo! that he considered the season to be a “smash hit home run” for FX.

Season 16 of “TUF” will feature welterweight fighters, though White said that coaches for the show have not yet been selected. With a return to the taped format, filming for the show will likely last six weeks instead of the 12 weeks required for the most recent season. According to White, viewers can also expect a greater emphasis on the personal lives of the fighters.

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