Brad Katona makes history as the first-ever two-time winner of The Ultimate Fighter. Read about his thrilling victory and the upcoming TUF 31 bantamweight final.
Brad Katona has secured his place in The Ultimate Fighter history by becoming the first-ever two-time winner of the long-running reality show. After emerging victorious in TUF 27 at featherweight, Katona has now advanced to the TUF 31 bantamweight final with a split decision win over Timur Valiev.
The fight between Katona and Valiev was a thrilling battle that lasted three bloody rounds. Both fighters sustained cuts on their heads during the contest, with Katona covered in crimson after the first five minutes and Valiev busted open in Round 2.
Despite the bloodshed, the fight showcased a fine display of technical skill. Katona scored with strong counters, while Valiev did damage with leg kicks and combinations. The wrestling exchanges were evenly matched, with both fighters displaying great technique.
In the end, the judges deemed Katona to have done enough to advance in the bantamweight tournament. He now awaits the winner of the Rico DiSciullo vs. Cody Gibson semifinal.
Katona’s victory gave Conor McGregor, his teammate and coach on TUF, something to celebrate. McGregor’s team had a rough start to the season, but Katona’s win provided a much-needed boost.
Next week, the lightweight finalists will be determined as Team Chandler fighters Jason Knight and Kurt Holobaugh face off. The winner of that fight will go on to face Austin Hubbard at the finale.
The Ultimate Fighter 31 airs live every Tuesday at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN and ESPN+. The season finale will be followed by a welterweight bout between Conor McGregor and Michael Chandler, although the matchup has not been made official yet.
The TUF 31 lightweight and bantamweight finalists will also compete for a six-figure UFC contract at a future show. The date for the finals is yet to be announced.
TUF 31 Roster
Here is the TUF 31 roster divided by team:
Team McGregor (prospects)
|Lee Hammond (27, 5-0)||Mando Gutierrez (26, 8-2)|
|Nate Jennerman (29, 16-5)||Trevor Wells (27, 8-3)|
|Aaron McKenzie (34, 11-2-1)||Carlos Vera (35, 11-3)|
|Landon Quinones (27, 7-1-1)||Rico DiSciullo (36, 11-2, 1 NC)|
Team Chandler (veterans)
|Jason Knight (30, 23-7)||Hunter Azure (31, 10-3)|
|Austin Hubbard (31, 15-6)||Brad Katona (31, 12-2)|
|Roosevelt Roberts (28, 12-3, 1 NC)||Timur Valiev (33, 18-3, 1 NC)|
|Kurt Holobaugh (36, 19-7, 1 NC)||Cody Gibson (35, 19-8)|
Here are the quarterfinal results:
|Roosevelt Roberts def. Nate Jennerman||First-round KO||Cody Gibson def. Mando Gutierrez||First-round TKO|
|Austin Hubbard def. Aaron McKenzie||Unanimous decision||Timur Valiev def. Trevor Wells||Unanimous decision|
|Brad Katona def. Carlos Vera||Unanimous decision||Kurt Holobaugh def. Lee Hammond||Second-round submission (guillotine choke)|
|Jason Knight def. Landon Quinones||First-round submission (triangle choke)||Rico DiSciullo def. Hunter Azure||Second-round KO|
Semi-Final Results and Matchups
Here are the semi-final results and matchups:
|Austin Hubbard def. Roosevelt Roberts||Split decision|
|Brad Katona def. Timur Valiev||Split decision|
The finals of The Ultimate Fighter 31 are shaping up to be an exciting event. Brad Katona’s historic win has set the stage for an intense bantamweight final, where he will face either Rico DiSciullo or Cody Gibson. Stay tuned for more updates on the TUF 31 finals!