Multiple sources have confirmed that former UFC Lightweight Champion Jens Pulver has been signed as one of the coaches on the fifth season of The Ultimate Fighter on Spike TV.
Pulver just recently signed a contract to bring him back to the UFC, where he was (and still is) the one and only 155-pound champion in UFC history. While it still hasn’t been announced when Pulver will actually fight, his prominent placement as a coach on TUF is a sign that the UFC is committed to showcasing the lightweight fighters from here on out.
This would also lend credence to the speculation that Season 5 of The Ultimate Fighter is set to feature lightweight fighters for the first time in the history of the series. Stocking the show with the lightest weight class in the UFC has long been rumored, but bringing Pulver in as a coach would seem to make those rumors much more concrete.
The history of the show could lend some insight as to whom the other coach might be, as a UFC fight with Pulver could be the end result.
The list of fighters who could possibly step in as the other coach could include BJ Penn, who has also signed with the UFC and has a history with Jens Pulver. Penn suffered the first loss of his career at the hands of Pulver in January 2002, which was also the last time that Pulver fought in the UFC.
Another possibility is that the other coaching slot on TUF 5 could go to the winner of the proposed August match-up between Sean Sherk and a currently unannounced lightweight fighter. This could explain why the UFC was so fast in attempting to put together a fight between Sherk and TUF 1 finalist Kenny Florian.
No official announcement has been made about the debut date for Season 5 of The Ultimate Fighter (Season 4 doesn’t start airing until August 17th), but Jens Pulver will anchor one coaching spot, with the other still left to fill.