Late Wednesday night at a press conference in Japan, UFC president Dana White (pictured) announced the planet’s premier mixed martial arts promotion is partnering with VTJ to produce a new tournament series.
The show will be similar to the UFC’s “The Ultimate Fighter,” where the tourney winner will earn a UFC contract. However, no word if Japan’s victors will score six-figure deals like TUF winners.
“Much like The Ultimate Fighter, this series will continue to cultivate and popularize top talent for us in new markets. The round-robin tournament concept is going to make for amazing fights, with a lot at stake,” White said in a release. “Every fight will matter, every performance will count. I am so excited to be back in Japan.”
The tournament will feature the bantamweight (135 pounds) and featherweight (145 pounds) divisions and will air on Japanese terrestrial TV, which could potentially be shown in millions of Japanese homes.
The UFC is hoping the new partnership will help them discover the best talent in Japan.
More details about the tournament will be released when the UFC returns to Japan for UFC Fight Night on September 20.