Amir Sadollah: The Next Big Thing from Xtreme Couture

Sterling SpiarsAnalyst IJuly 19, 2009

LOS ANGELES - APRIL 7:  Wrestler Randy Couture arrives at a special screening of Sony Pictures Classics' 'Redbelt' at the Egyptian Theatre on April 7, 2008 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

While many fight fans can argue that The Ultimate Fighter 7 was the weakest in terms of competition, we need to realize that the UFC ultimately gained a true prospect of the sport in Amir Sadollah.

Amir, like some people, began taking Mixed Martial Arts as a way to keep himself fit and in shape.  Eventually, Sadollah began to take the sport more seriously and applied for the International Fight League in Chicago.  He was selected and that caught the attention of Dana White enough for an invitation to The Ultimate Fighter tryouts in the latter part of 2007.

Sadollah came into the show with a professional record of 0-0, which makes some wonder what the producers saw in him.  Many believe he landed this spot because of his personality that was built for prime-time television.  He quickly diminished any talk of his record by submitting Steve Byrnes and earning his spot in the house.  That victory impressed Coach Forrest Griffin enough to make Amir Sadollah his second pick.

He then went on to defeat Gerald Harris by second round t.k.o. to earn his spot in the quarter-finals against "The Immortal" Matt Brown.  He disposed of the skilled striker with a second round triangle choke on his way to the semi-finals, where he tapped out C.B. Dolloway in the third round with an armbar.

Amir was set to fight Jesse Taylor in the finale, but some extra-curricular activity led Dana to pull Jesse from the fight.  C.B. Dolloway defeated Tim Credeur to earn a rematch against Sadollah in the season seven finale, where Amir once again defeated Dolloway with an armbar.

He was penciled in to fight Nick Catone at UFC 91, but Amir was forced to withdraw from the match due to an infection in his leg.  The fight was rescheduled for UFC Fight Night 17 where he was once again forced from the card, this time a result of a broken collarbone.

His second UFC fight has now been slated for August 8 at UFC 101, against the undefeated Johny Hendricks.  Amir is slightly favored to win despite having a professional record of 2-0 to Hendrick's mark of 5-0.

This would be a big setback for Sadollah should he lose, and another reason why The Ultimate Fighter 7 was one of the weaker seasons in terms of talent.  Above all though, I'm sure we can expect the Irish-Iranian fighter to prove he does deserve his six-figure contract and his cemented status as a UFC fighter.