Reflection on The Ultimate Fighter, Week 3

   Week three of The Ultimate Fighter begins with the information that two of the contestants, Brian and Karn, have fractured their noses and have been suspended for 180 days by the Nevada State Athletic Commission. As a result Kyle Kingsbury and Roli Delgado (one of the lankiest lightweights ever) got to come back.

   Teams were picked with Roli’s identity being unknown and going to whomever had the last pick of the lightweights. Mir won the coin-toss and chose to pick first, giving Nogueira control over the first fight.

   Mir feels that as individuals none of his fighters can be beat. Nog on the other hand took the Couture route and chose a group of guys he thinks will bond as a team. Which we see happen in this episode, with Nog going over to his team’s house for a meal, and being really excited about their ability to cook.

   John Polakowski (the cat who loves to hug people) is simply stoked about everything and gives Dana White a hug. I am so glad this guy is on the show. John comes from The Pitt, and reminds me a lot of Pitt alumni Jason Von Flue. He isn’t as obviously strange, but he seems to have suppressed his crazy and simply lets it out in hug form.

   Both Nog and Mir bring in competent assistant coaches (no Shamrock fiasco this season) including Mir’s assistant coach, former Abu Dhabi champion Robert Drysdale. The standout however is Nog’s assistant boxing coach Al “Stankie” Stankiewicz. Stankie is 67 and awesome, it’s like Burgess Meredith is on the show. If he calls someone “a wrecking machine” this will officially be my favourite season. How do you not love a guy named Stankie?

   And now a break from all this training and showcasing the sport, and on to the half of the show built for ratings.

   It seems to be a new house for the cast this season (unless it isn’t and I didn’t notice before now). But as we enter the house Junie finds the hall closet stocked full of booze. So stocked that we can predict shenanigans-a-plenty folks. Unless said booze gets taken away, which wouldn’t surprise me based on the pace set by Junie in this episode.

   Junie manages in a rather quick segment to call out the red team, get hit with bamboo, break a glass, break a plant, break pool cues, have an emotional breakdown, cry on the ground and hug everyone.  Apparently Junie didn’t have a great childhood. He also claims that this is a mental game and that he plans to trick everyone else into thinking he is a mess so the underestimate him.

   That well-timed statement is followed by a commercial for next week that shows Junie getting into a bunch of fights, getting torn apart by Dana and jumping into the Octagon after a fight. What can you say, he may be the biggest jackass yet, which means he should be able to at least get a 3 fight contract.

   It’s a shame that Junie is such a mess, since he seems to be a talented fighter.

   Meanwhile, Krzysztof Soszynski shrink-wrapped all of Team Nogueira’s underwear together and everyone had a good laugh (Hurrah for wholesome prankery).

   Ok, now back to Mixed Martial Arts.

   Nogueira selects Ryan Bader from his team to fight Tom Lawlor from Team Mir for the first Light Heavyweight bout. Nog feels that Tom is a better wrestler than everyone on his team except Bader, so it makes sense to take him out.

   Ryan Bader is a two time All-American wrestler from ASU and Nog’s “golden boy”, his pick to win the show. Something I must agree with. Tom Lawlor fights out of American Top Team Orlando and is an entertaining guy. In his pre fight interview he states that Bader is bigger, stronger, faster, better looking and better dressed, all of which pose a big threat and add motivation. I like him despite the pink polo shirt.

   Dana White predicts that the fight will stay standing since both guys are solid wrestlers, and that appears as if it will be true in the first couple minutes of the fight. Bader and Tom exchange pretty evenly on the feet, neither landing anything big. Bader gets the takedown but Tom’s wrestling allows him to return to his feet. Bader attempts a clinch and Tom pushes through. Tom takes a swing and Bader beautifully changes levels for another takedown. The fight came to a conclusion, just as it seemed Bader was only doing enough to stay on the ground, when he postured up and knocked Tom out on the ground.

   Tom was gracious in his loss and I would not be surprised if he has a few fights in the UFC. This was a great fight to kick off the season, and I wouldn’t have been surprised to see it as a semi-finale later on.

   Remember to tune in next week when everyone at the house goes insane and Dana hopefully gives an awesome speech.

4 Responses to “Reflection on The Ultimate Fighter, Week 3”

  1. J Says:

    I really need to watch this show more this season. Its like “The Hills” with burly dudes who kick ass all the time!!!
    Honestly though, love the in depth review of all the shows. Its awesome to hear a real fight fan wade through the “reality tv” of it all to get to the real nitty gritty of it. The majority (of the TV public) can’t get that far, and therefore, if Ray we trust!

  2. mazzeiguns Says:

    Good reflection on the show brah! You made some super-valid points, and I totally agree that it will be the best season ever if Stankie calls someone a wreckin’ machine! I’m so pumped! Nothing I dig more than curling up on the couch with some fat-free popcorn and throwing this on the tube. Makes my day wicked.
    You appear to be very insightful on the subject of MMA and the show. keep up the good work brah!

  3. cbogs Says:

    I would actually say that your observations make me more inclined to watch this more often…you strike a great balance between the reality show dynamic between the fighters, opinions of their individual personalities and how that contributes to the fights each week. Solid review, though lacking in Rocky references!

  4. cbogs Says:

    I take that back, my quick read missed one of the best Rocky references yet, these are the best reviews ever!

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