THE MMA INJURY BUG: DIEGO SANCHEZ – THE LAST OF THE SEASON ONE TUF FIGHTERS

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When fans consider the season of”The Ultimate Fighter,” Forrest Griffin and Stephan Bonnar immediately come to mind as a result of the immediate classic. Therefore, its only suiting that the very first ever Ultimate Fighter be the last to leave the UFC. No, I am not speaking about Forrest Griffin. The fight between Bonnar and Griffin during the TUF’s Season 1 Finale single-handedly helped bring the UFC into the mainstream. Dana White later called it Zuffa’s”Trojan Horse”. However, in doing so, it overshadowed the fact that Diego Sanchez was actually the first ever Ultimate Fighter winner, with defeated Kenny Florian to take home the middleweight TUF crown before in the evening. With all the former cast members on the show either retired or not used with the UFC, the only exception remains to be Sanchez. The first to be crowned remains to be the last to grace the Octagon. When the contestants were first announced for”The Ultimate Fighter 1,” Sanchez was the fighter with the most hype surrounding him. As the undefeated King of the Cage champion, he backed up that hype in the Octagon winning all four of his fights, together with three first-round stoppages such as a submission over Florian in the Finale. The true main event of that card has been fully overshadowed as Rich Franklin scored the biggest win of his career at the time over Ken Shamrock. For the ordinary fight fan Sanchez dominance of the series is easily forgotten as TUF 1 seems like it was forever ago. Lots can happen over a decade, and Sanchez’s lengthy r??sum?? proves it. He has won a bunch of fights and lost some, hopped divisions, got popped for marijuana, made six”Fight of the Night” bonuses along with two”Battle of the Year” (2006 Karo Parisyan, 2009 Clay Guida) honours, lost a lightweight name tip to then-champ BJ Penn, altered his nickname in the”Nightmare” to the”Fantasy” and back to the”Nightmare” again and let’s not forget about him inventing the Yes! Cartwheel, simply to name a couple. Total going to war within the Octagon on 21 distinct events amassing as 14-7 record. Based on his durability and age it was almost expected that Sanchez is going to be the final fighter we see within the Octagon and rightfully so. Much was said about the entire cast of the series to the scope that Dana White stated he had been basically seeking to induct the whole TUF 1 cast into the UFC Hall of fame. It’s been a well documented success story deserving of fairy tale type end. However, what remains to be seen by the die hard MMA fans is… IMG_1728Will Diego Sanchez venture out having a swan song of epic proportions in hopes of building upon The Ultimate Fighter Seasons 1 cemented legacy? Diego Sanchez would tell you YES! YES! YES! Considering Sanchez’s recent time as a fighter, it is more unlikely that anything of importance will come out of the rest of the period of his formerly famed career. The likely scenario and eventual end game is equal to that of the majority of the rest of the TUF 1 cast members. The consensus is that many of the TUF 1 cast members moved outside with a whimper facing exactly the same troubling realities that Sanchez currently faces on a daily basis: injuries and age. The majority of the contestants basically were forced into retirement. As fans of this UFC, let’s hope Diego Sanchez may break this trend and go out with a bang because it’s likely he won’t go out anywhere near the top. Finishing on a winning notice is the ideal case scenario for”The Nightmare” at this stage in his career. Taking a photo of Sanchez’s professional career, it’s likely he’ll depart the UFC kicking and screaming like many others before him. What remains to be informed is the how and if. One can’t deny it. The writing is on the wall with no true hope of championship aspirations in the not too distant future. Sit back and revel in the last of the TUF 1 display. But, based on Diego’s Sanchez most recent turns of a occasions in his profession prepare yourself for a sad ending. The dropping down in weight classes and layoff because of rehabbing injuries it’s creating a recipe for disaster. Essentially it won’t be a dream come true for your nightmare. Quoting Connor McGregor at 2013:”The guy is a has-been.” IMG_1727Sanchez is expected to face Ricardo Lamas in a featherweight bout on November 21, 2015 at The Ultimate Fighter Latin America two Finale. This will be Sanchez introduction at featherweight despite the fact that he was the middleweight TUF 1 champion. Sanchez is expecting to have a run at championship glory despite facing the longest layoff of his professional MMA profession (1 year 4 Months) and in 33 years old. The layoff is due to a broken collarbone suffered in training. Many pundits charge the statement he’s dropping a weight class for a way to acquire an eventually struggle against Connor McGregor. However, many MMA handicappers see this because of weakness because of an attempt by Sanchez to remain relevant. Though many MMA mainstream enthusiasts fail to crown Diego Sanchez since the original Ultimate Fighter, he’s out lasted all of them. Being the youngest of this TUF 1 fighters it continues to function in his advantage but he is fighting the age old issue of time. Regardless of how durable Sanchez could be, it remains to be seen if he could pass this last test. As his commendable career rolls on, it’s clear Sanchez is no more immune from the injury bug. However, there needs to be something said for being the last of a dying breed. That feat alone is worthy of all our respect since it has left us with no doubt that he will always remain to be the toughest of the TUF. The initial Ultimate Fighter to be crowned inside the Octagon and the last to depart.

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