I’d like to report that this week’s episode of The Ultimate Fighter featured two exciting bouts between willing combatants. I’d like to say that the action outside the ring was entertaining, but in no way compared to the drama inside the octagon. Unfortunately, I can’t say any of this, but can however write that there was much more Mexican wrestling than I expected when I tuned in.
Well, the show was supposed to include the postponed match between team UK’s Dave Faulkner and Team USA’s Jason Pierce. In the previous episode Faulkner injured himself and Pierce was just injured. While Faulkner appeared fully healed, his latest issue is his inability to fight while wearing his “gum shield”, as it triggers his gag reflex. I doubt I was the only one watching who wondered how anyone gets this far in MMA with a problem like that!? Coach Michael Bisping was so concerned with this turn of events he barely remembered to end each sentence with “you know what I mean?” The preview for next week’s episode revealed that Faulkner will see a hypnotist to deal with this problem. Perhaps Frank Lester will someday hear back from his HMO about coverage for his psychosis, but not apparently anytime next week.
The combination of Pierce’s injured leg (“staph infection”) and his chronic complaining about the injury caused Dana White to confront the fighter and ask him if his heart was really into his scheduled bout. Pierce failed to convince the UFC President that he could continue and White had the tough job of informing Pierce that he would not fight on TUF. I predict that Pierce will now stick around the house for the remaining weeks like a bad smell and do nothing but cause aggravation for his teammates.
In a truly bizarre scene, Team UK somehow sourced enough full head masks to put on their own wrestling routine involving most members of the team. Those who were without masks wore latex gloves worn on their heads and one fighter appeared to have a pig snout and ears, possibly home made. The main event concluded with two fighters flying backwards off the pool’s diving board in a “suplex” and one of them, Dean Amasinger, being hit in the face with what may or may not have been a bucket of pool chemicals. You can’t make this stuff up folks.
In the night’s only real fight, Team USA’s Jason Dent took on Team UK’s Jeff Lawson in a lightweight contest. Lawson said prior to his fight that his strategy is always the same, “throw a few punches, throw my opponent really hard and take him out with an arm bar”. For reasons unknown, his actual strategy was as follows: do none of those things and run out of gas in the second round, eventually finding yourself in an anaconda choke and losing. Dent was less than impressive in victory and drew heavy criticism from Dana White after his bout. I’m not sure if White would have been more impressed if Dent had worn a wrestling mask or hit Lawson with a folding chair, but it probably wouldn’t have hurt.