Dana White: 'Uriah Hall Most Feared TUF Contestant Ever'
Even before TUF 17 got underway and fans had been given a glimpse of a single contestant, such as middleweight Uriah Hall, we were being told that one man was widely feared in the house.
Eager journalists suggested that the mystery man could be Swedish talent Tor Troeng, who in the end failed to get passed the first round. But now that the dust has settled on the first season, and four men lay in the hospital, it is unquestionable that UFC president Dana White was referring to Hall himself.
Hall has walked through everybody over 12 weeks of the show, breaking his first opponent’s arm, brutally knocking out the second two, and destroying his final opponent, Kiwi Dylan Andrews, via TKO.
With the airing of the season now over, White continues to lavish Hall with praise only worthy of a potential title contender.
“Every guy Uriah fought wound up in the hospital,” UFC President Dana White told USA TODAY Sports (h/t MMA Junkie). “That's never happened in the history of TUF... He is without a doubt the most-feared guy coming out of TUF. Ever.”
That is a remarkable statement for a show that’s been running for 17 seasons and has produced such athletes as Rashad Evans, Forrest Griffin, Nate Diaz and Josh Koscheck.
Hall has been fighting as a pro since 2005 and his two losses in that time have come at the hands of Chris Weidman and Christina Phillipou—two top-ranked UFC middleweights, one of whom (Weidman) is preparing to meet champion Anderson Silva this July.
During the show Hall demonstrated his devastating power, including one of the scariest knockouts ever seen in MMA—a wheel-kick KO of Adam Cella inside the first round.
His performances already have fans talking about him as a potential title contender. In fact, Weidman is said to be training with Hall in his preparation for his title fight against Silva. No TUF contestant has emerged out of the house so highly regarded, and that’s something White sees too.
“People are on my Twitter saying, ‘This guy should go right to a title shot’... All of the fans have super-high expectations for Uriah,” said White.
But before any of that can happen, Hall will have to face the other TUF finalist, Kelvin Gastelum, at the TUF 17 Finale this Saturday at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas.
Should he send Gastelum to the hospital, as well, then Hall may be given the quickest route to the top tier of the UFC’s middleweight division we have ever seen.
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