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Wednesday, December 03, 2008
Surprise, Surprise! Another Incident Involving Junie Browning on Tonight's TUF
by Ivan Trembow
I am looking forward to tonight's loaded WEC show, headlined by Miguel Torres vs. Manny Tapia, but I am not looking forward to tonight's installments of The Ultimate Drunkard (also known as The Ultimate Fighter).
When the decision was made earlier in the season to not kick Junie Browning off the show even though he did multiple things that would have individually warranted being kicked off the show, any remaining doubt was removed about whether the powers-that-be have any faith left in the concept of "a bunch of young fighters struggle to earn their way into the TUF finals" (as opposed to the "get a bunch of Type-A personalities wasted and film the ensuing chaos" concept).
Zuffa president Dana White has said in recent interviews that the final decision was his alone to make, and that everyone else involved in the production of the show was shocked that Browning was not kicked off.
Later in the season, the show devolved further into the realm of Trash TV and actually sunk lower than Trash TV ever has, as several members of Team Nogueira ate a platter of fruit salad without knowing that several members of Team Mir had urinated in it; and Dave Kaplan ate some sushi without knowing that Kyle Kingsbury had mixed his semen into it (I can't believe I just wrote that sentence).
And now that the season is coming to an end, what better time to dip back to the depths of Trash TV? As the commercials on Spike TV have been prominently advertising for the past two weeks, Junie Browning goes nuts again and is shown in the commercial swinging at another contestant, which would be the fourth thing that Browning has done that would normally warrant kicking a contest off of the show (the first three were throwing a glass at Kyle Kingsbury, getting into a poolside altercation with Ryan Bader, and jumping over the Octagon fence in an aggressive, looking-for-a-fight manner after another contestant's official MMA fight had just ended).
As I wrote earlier in the season when the UFC made the decision not to kick Browning off the show, "You think there's going to be another incident of some kind involving Junie Browning before the season wraps? Of course there is, and that's the point." By not kicking Browning off the show, another volatile situation or near-fight in the house was almost guaranteed to break out at some point.
I think it's likely that after Browning's fourth major incident, viewers are going to be subjected to a sanctimonious speech from Dana White about how the UFC won't stand for that kind of behavior, and then he'll finally kick Browning off the show, oblivious or apathetic to the fact that keeping Browning on the show after the previous three incidents has already made a mockery of the show's credibility.
To a degree, it has always been like this on TUF, but this time around, viewers have been practically beaten over the head with it.
At this point, it takes a special kind of "naive" to think that Browning's behavior is not what the UFC wants from at least one contestant on each season.