oh 100%, Lauzon is fucking awesome. There were some really good fighters from all those seasons, but I think if we’re “best” as guys who won at a higher level, I think TUF 1 has to be the clear winner.
Everyone is all over Nate Diaz, but he was consistently ranked outside the top 5, typically lower in the top 10. He moved up to 170 and did ok there too, but was pretty consistently a .500 fighter in the UFC while fighting tough guys. Since that time, he won 2 fights, and is still a .500 fighter…his wins are over Conor (the 145 pound champ fighting at 170 pounds for the first time ever) and Pettis. Still impressive, not saying he sucks…but when he’s the biggest “star” from that season, and also has a win over Maynard, I think we have to consider Nate to be the best fighter from that season. Wiman, Miller and Gamburyan were all good too, but not guys headlining shows or fighting elite guys.
As annoying as Diego is, he was a top guy for a while, and if not for BJ Penn, he’s likely the champ for a period of time. Kenny Florian was consistently fighting top guys, and had 3 different title shots because he kept winning fights. Forest was the champ, and beat some excellent “all time great” type fighters. KOS was also a guy that likely would have been champ if not for all time great GSP. You have to get down to the 5th or 6th best fighter (Leben or Swick?) to find guys that are similar to Wiman or Miller, and I do think both Leben and Swick were better fighters than Miller and Wiman. Fuck, even Bonnar was a really good fighter for a little while there.
Both seasons were great, but TUF 1 was awesome.