According to ESPN’s Brett Okamoto, UFC featherweight champion Alexander ‘The Great’ Volkanovski (22-1) will be one of two coaches, along with Brian Ortega (15-1), for the 29th season of ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ (TUF) reality series.
The long-running show, features professional MMA fighters as they train and compete one another, while living in the same house in Las Vegas.
At the conclusion of the season, Volkanovski and Ortega will square off in a five-round fight for the featherweight (66kg) title.
A date for the bout has yet to be announced, but Volkanovski wasted no time to show his excitement.
“Would you look at that…Looks like we in Vegas for a while!!,” he wrote in an Instagram post last Saturday (Apr 4), in regards to the announcement.
It’s welcomed-news for Volkanovski, who trained for years out of Tiger Muay Thai & MMA Training Camp in Chalong. His fight with Ortega was originally scheduled for UFC 260 in Las Vegas, which took place on March 27, but he was forced out of the bout after testing positive for COVID-19.
This will be the Aussie’s second title defense, following his five-round war against former champion Max Holloway last July on Fight Island in Abu Dhabi, which he won via split decision. With back-to-back wins over the consensus best UFC featherweight champion of all-time, Volkanovski will look to make a statement against Ortega, who lost to Holloway by TKO in 2018.
The California-native is now three years removed from the first loss of his career. He came back with a vengeance in October last year, earning a unanimous decision victory over ‘The Korean Zombie’ Chan San Jung.