The UFC’s iconic reality show-turned talent-finding series, The Ultimate Fighter, is about to kick off its 30th season, and will be coached by both sides of one of the UFC’s newest championship rivalries.
Newly-crowned women’s bantamweight champion Julianna Pena and women’s MMA GOAT, current featherweight champion and former bantamweight champ Amanda Nunes will to head to head as opposing coaches in the upcoming season as they start the long run-up to their title rematch later this year.
Nunes is widely considered the greatest female MMA fighter of all time, and was a long-reigning two-division UFC champion heading into December 2021. But Pena stunned the MMA world by dethroning Nunes with a second-round submission finish of “The Lioness” at UFC 269 in one of the biggest championship shocks in UFC history.
A rematch between the pair seemed inevitable, and now they have been pitched head to head as rival coaches on The Ultimate Fighter, where they’ll take charge of teams of men’s heavyweight and women’s flyweight fighters, who are looking to earn themselves a UFC contract by winning their TUF tournament.
Notable names involved in the season include former LFA and Cage Warriors fighter Zac Pauga and former PFL heavyweight Mohammed Usman, brother of current UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman.
The Ultimate Fighter Season 30: Fighter Lineups
- Nyle Bartling (6-0), 29, Unadilla, NE
- Chandler Cole (8-3), 27, Coeburn, VA
- Jordan Heiderman (5-0), 30, Norfolk, NE
- Bobby Maximus (5-4), 43, Salt Lake City, UT
- Zac Pauga (5-0), 33, Denver, CO
- Eduardo Perez (4-1), 27, Berkeley, CA
- Mitchell Sipe (5-2), 25, Bakersfield, CA
- Mohammed Usman (7-2), 32, Denver, CO
- Chantel Coates (2-1), 34, Leavenworth, KS
- Claire Guthrie (3-1), 26, Denver, CO
- Juliana Miller (2-1), 25, San Diego, CA
- Kaytlin Neil (5-4), 30, Lindon, UT
- Kathryn Paprocki (3-2), 28, Denver, CO
- Melissa Parker (2-1), 35, Houston, TX
- Helen Peralta (4-2), 33, Fairfield, IA
- Brogan Walker (7-2), 32, Guam
The Ultimate Fighter: Team Pena vs. Team Nunes starts Tuesday, May 3 on ESPN+