TUF 9 episodes 10-12 ranking

*Please note my TAR blogs are ten times better and with screen caps

Tenth episode:

Previously on TUF: Dana questioned Pierce’s heart and pulled him from the competition. Giving Frank Lester a shot at redemption. Tension between the teams went from bad to worse. Then in the final preliminary fight, UK favourite David Faulkner failed to answer the bell for round three giving comeback kid Lester the most shocking upset of the season.

Up next the semi-final matchups. Who will secure a spot in the finale and move one step closer to becoming the ultimate fighter?

– Intro time. We were told last week that two welterweights would be fighting. Does that mean Frank Lester could be fighting for the fourth time in eight episodes? That would be nutty.

– Holes are in the door of Bisping’s door. Time to pick the semi-final fights. Dana has had a Probst-like heavy presence for the past few episodes. Bisping and Henderson relatively agree on the match-ups for welterweights. The lightweights they disagree. Dana still wants to call each of them out and ask who they want to fight.

JAMES: I wanna fight Damarques.
DAMARQUES: I want James. Because I want to hurt his feelings.
NICK: Frankie.
FRANK: I think me and Nick make an exciting fight.
ROSS: I think stylistically that I would get a better fight with Dent.
DENT: I want Dent.
ANDRE: I’m happy to fight either.
CAM: Anybody I fight next is going to be tough.
DANA: Is there anyone you’d love to fight?
CAM: I don’t know. . .it sounds retarded. . .because Dent’s been talking s— to me. I don’t want to fight my own team.
DANA: You wanna fight Dent.
CAM: Yeah. Maybe.

– Dana wants Cam to fight Dent as well. So he proposes that the teams fight within each other for the semis. I am sure producers pitched the idea so it guarantees a season finale where one British fighter fights an American fighter in each bracket. He asks Henderson and Bisping what they think of the idea. Bisping catches on the concept behind it and refuses to accept it because he has the stronger team. Henderson doesn’t care what happened.

– Bisping finds that Dana is too scared to set it up. Dana orders Bisping and Henderson not to tell the team bout the possibility of fighting their own team.

– Henderson fingers Dana during the Fight Announcement.

– First fight is Nick versus Damarques. Henderson is shocked.
– Second fight is Andre versus Cameron.
– Third fight is Ross versus Dent.
– Fourth fight is James versus Frank (thank god he gets the rest. It’s a re-match too. That seems a bit silly to have a re-match.)

– House time. BBQ for everyone. Everyone understands the picks. Frank knows his fight will be a slugfest. Dean says the BBQ with the opposing team is great.

– Pierce tells Faulkner that they were a great team and took pride. Meanwhile he explains that his own team was stuck eating, drinking, and arguing. A lot of them were saying that. . .oh, here comes Richie.

– Richie plays with Pierce. He hates Pierce always b—ing to Team UK about his own team. He confronts Pierce. Pierce says they are dumbf—s, broke dishes, and go after each other. Richie explains how much heart Frank had and that Pierce was the one who refused to fight. He never fought. Richie offers to jump weight. Faulkner sits Richie back on the bench. Pierce offers to smash Richie’s eyeballs. Richie wonders if he should go up in weight.

– Pierce coaches Faulkner on what he should have done in the Frank fight. Richie disowns him. In the next morning Richie explains to his team that Pierce is giving Team UK all of the pointers and everything about training. Including Damarques’ training and techniques. Dang Pierce is the epitome of Benedict Arnold.

– USA training session. Henderson is confident in his own team. He says Damarques was sick for a few days but appears to be fine now. Damarques believes he is the best fighter in the House compared to everyone else. I’m inclined to agree seeing how his edit has progressed through the season. Henderson points out Damarques won’t have as much of a reach advantage seeing how Nick is a lankier guy. Damarques has no control over what Nick does and can only control what he does. Like a second grader who was just lectured about physical violence in elementary school.

– Henderson confronts Pierce if he gave Team UK pointers. Pierce denies it. Henderson continues to press Pierce about the issue. He finds it to be bulls—. There is a Team USA cheer with Pierce noticeably excluded.

– UK training session. Nick admits that he told Faulkner to go to Pierce to extract information about Demarques. If I was Demarques I would do a 180 degree turn on my techniques.

– Bisping concedes that Damarques is the strongest fighter on the opposing team, and thus works harder to make Nick ready for the fight. H ewants Nick to stay on his feet and maintain his range.

– Bisping says getting your butt kicked in training prior to the semis is what makes you the best fighter. Nobody is cheering you on and giving you a cheque when you are in training sessions, but it is what defines you as being a good fighter.

– Fight Day already. Nick confesses that this is toughest fight to date. We see him alone in the gym shadowboxing in front of the octagon. So staged. Damarques prays once again in the octagon. He just prays to perform well. Great editing between his prayer in the octagon and sitting in the locker room.

– TapOut Crew shows up again.

DAMARQUES JOHNSON
SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH
26
6’1
76″
13-6

NICK OSCIPZAK
LONDON, UK
24
6’2
75″
3-0

I say Damarques will slaughter Nick in this fight.

– Dana introduces the first semi-final fight. 3 5-minute rounds. None of this 2-round bullcrap.

– Damarques gives the horns. Herb Dean is our referee. They touch gloves. Circling. DJ lands a job. Nick misses jabs. DJ blocks more jabs. Nick barely lands a leg kick. Damarques breaks through the barrier has he lands jabs. Nick swoops in but Damarques lands uppercuts. Nick lands a leg kick. Both land punches. Muay Thai clinch. Damarques lands some knees before flipping Nick onto the ground. He wrestles Nick on the ground. Nick scrambles back to his feet. Nick throws some big punches but misses. Damarques connects with a jab. Nick fires a leg kick. Damarques appears to break his hand on a punch. Both land strikes and kicks. DJ punches the body. Nick misses an overhand. DJ lands some more jabs to the face. Nick misses strikes of his own. DJ catches Nick’s arm and throws him to the ground. Nick pulls guard. Nick attempts submission but DJ avoids it. DJ moves into half mount. He is very close to full mount. Nick is bucking.  DJ was so close to full mount, but now it’s back to full guard. Nick elbows from the bottom. DJ lands one from up top. Half mount. DJ strikes the body. Nick is still elbowing from the bottom. Back to full guard. Nick elbows the side of the face from the bottom. DJ stands over him before returning to the guard. Nick scrambles up but DJ clinches him. Nick furiously punches DJ over and over. DJ throws a huge punch but Nick is furiously punching DJ in the face. DJ returns some punches. Round ends with an uppercut by Nick. HOW DID NOBODY GET KNOCKED OUT?

– DJ’s nose is bleeding like mad. That was such an awesome finish to the round. Everyone is fired up.

–  They touch gloves. Both fire jabs immediately. Some feints.  Both exchange strikes. Muay Thai clinch where DJ lands a huge knee on Nick’s face. Clinch broken. DJ throws some jabs.  Nick fires a couple leg kicks. Nick throws an overhand but DJ ducks and takes Nick down. He gets himself into side control. Henderson calls for DJ to trap an arm. DJ resorts to elbows. DJ switches sides only to be in Nick’s full guard. DJ needs to work on his ground game. Nick is close to a triangle. This is one of the strangest guards I have seen. DJ passes into side control again. He has Nick’s left arm trapped.  Nick appears helpless. DJ lets go of the arm and resorts to punching Nick’s face. He goes back to half mount. Nick has done nothing from his back. DJ has wasted opportunities. DJ smothers Nick. Nick booty scoots. Full guard. DJ strikes the face a couple more times. DJ lands with a great punch from on top. Butterfly guard. Nick tries to go for an arm but instead DJ half mounts. DJ succeeds in attaining full mount. He is too high on Nick but he has the hooks in. Nick is doing nothing but covering his face. Herby warns about the back of the head. Nick is suffering punches to the ear. And elbows. Bisping keeps contesting it’s back of the head. Bisping gives up and tells Nick he needs to get out. and do something. Herby does too. DJ keeps wailing on Nick. It looks like Herby is going to stop it. But then it’s the end of the round. DJ won that 10-8. Holy crap.

– We’re going to round three for the first time since House started. Nick is saying nothing in his corner. Evil horror music plays. Nick screams “YES!” finally. Henderson tells DJ that Nick is about to quit.

– They touch both all four gloves. They trade strikes. Both fire simultaneous  jabs. DJ is fresher as he gets in an extra jab. Nick fires a wild punch from up top. Nick is on the attack. He punches the body and leg kicks. He misses a Muay Thai clinch. DJ misses an uppercut. Both are firing strikes. DJ is dancing away before coming in with a huge haymaker. Nick misses a leg kick. DJ breaks through the barrier again. He closes the distance on Nick. Muay Thai clinch as DJ lands a jump-knee to Nick’s face. Clinch is broken. Both throw the occasional punch. DJ closes the distance. Nick misses a spinning backfist. He ain’t no Shonie. Nick is D-A-Z-E-D. DJ throws another punch to the face. And another. And another. Nick lands a leg kick. He tries a body kick but DJ catches it and tosses Nick down. DJ tries for full mount but Nick defends. For once. Only half mount. DJ has an arm but doing nothing with it. Herby calls for the fighters to work. So do I. Herby has nice shoes.  Small punches and elbows from DJ. DJ FINALLY gets full mount. Elbow to the head. Then punches. Nick turtles but switches to be in DJ’s full guard. Why didn’t Nick do this last round? DJ closes the distance. Nick reigns down some strikes. Nick desperately needs to pass guard. DJ punches back of the head from the bottom. Nick punches the body. DJ attempts a higher guard to set up a triangle. Nick punches the body. DJ punches from the bottom. Nick returns the strikes. End of round. Nick throws mouthpiece in frustration.

– Fight Replay. Henderson thought Demarques landed some good straight punches and worked the takedown. We see a slow motion of Nick’s uppercut against Demarques in the first round as well as the other numerous punches. Dana says the crew for the show went crazy as well.

– Damarques was on top for most of the second round.

– For the third round, Nick looked dangerous but done.

– The fight ends in favour of Damarques Johnson. DJ and Nick hug. Bisping congratulates Damarques on a heck of a fight. DJ doesn’t care he is moving into the finals because his tongue is still burning. Is that normal? Dana congratulates Demarques on the end of the first round.

– Demarques peels off a taste bud.

– Nick rolls into the training ring and says it was his only loss in ten fights. He intends to come up as a better fighter.

Next time on TUF: The four remaining lightweights square off. Andre Winner of Team UK takes on Team USA’s surprise sensation Cameron Dollar. And Team USA’s Jason Dent faces off against British bruiser Ross Pearson. Two semi-final fights in one episode. Who will move onto the finale and be just one win away from becoming the ultimate fighter?

1) Frank Lester vs. David Faulkner (You know that scene in Matilda where Bruce Bogtrotter raises the cake in triumph but suffers a strike to the head in the process while the audience cheers? The same thing happens in this fight. The conclusion is reminiscent of Sakuraba versus Gracie and when the heavily favoured Gracie when the corner throws the towel into the ring.)

2) Waylon Lowe vs. Santino Defranco (Santino is going to quit. He’ll totally quit at the end of the round. Wait, he’s coming out? Big knee? Rear naked choke? Dang.)

3) Nick Oscipzak vs. Damarques Johnson (A classic brawl for a chunk of the fight. It could have been the best fight of the season if there wasn’t such inactivity during the ground portion of the fight. How the heck did Damarques survive those hooks and uppercuts at the end of the first round?)

4) Jason Dent vs. Jeff Lawson (The energy in the gym was electrifying. Nothing was ever consistent in this fight. Both were frequently aiming for submissions. Sure it wasn’t an emphasized brawling fest but enough big strikes were landed to keep you on your toes. A couple of Lawson’s fakeouts were great. I would also add that Dent’ unorthodox  submission is a welcome relief from the abuse of rear naked chokes.)

5) Mark Miller vs. Nick Oscipzak (So many reversals. Who was in control? Some good strikes too. Yeah they were slow to work at certain moments, but then the knockout kick came.)

6) James Wilks vs. Frank Lester (It was exciting in the stand-up and exciting on the ground. Wilks landed some impressive strikes and knees during the fight. Frank’s inability to go down was worth the prolonged destruction. Oh, and who can forget one of the most iconic images of TUF 9–the four missing teeth? Is that how a Christmas tune was inspired?)

7) AJ Wenn vs. Ross Pearson (Skillful grappling followed by the biggest beatdown of the premiere. Those knees were vicious. How the heck did AJ answer the bell for the second round?

8) Gary Kelly vs. Andre Winner (Perhaps the best fight in terms of striking. They weren’t afraid to go after each other, and that’s what we love to see in MMA. That brutal knee was the best strike of the episode.)

9) Damarques Johnson vs. Ray Elbe (They squared off in the beginning, but Damarques pounded him, pounded him some more, and created one of the biggest gashes in TUF history. I love blood.)

10) Kiel Reid vs. Frank Lester (Two words: Gray Maynard.)

11) Dean Amasinger vs. Damarques Johnson (Seeing a guy struggle helplessly to escape a triangle choke is disturbingly gratifying.)

12) Richie Whitson vs. Ross Pearson (It was a great stand-up battle. Unfortunately it was sullied by a couple of illegal blows that cannot help one but wonder how this fight would have looked if it was played by the rules.)

13) Che Mills vs. James Wilks (Great rally from James as he grabs a leg and taps Che out from the bottom. Granted it was a quick fight.)

14) Cam Dollar vs. Martin Stapleton (Short fight without any memorable strikes except for the one to the top of the head. Textbook rear naked choke. Should be lower, really.)

15) Richie Whitson vs. Paul Bird (Decent striking by both guys. Paul clearly didn’t know what to do on the ground compared to Richie. There was a fine armbar attempt by Paul, but Richie brushed it off and slapped on a textbook rear naked choke on Paul.)

16) Andre Winner vs. Santino DeFranco (Well. . .uh . . .at least Andre finished it relatively quickly. Did Santino do anything worthwhile?

17) Martin Stapleton vs. Dan James (Only about ten seconds of the whole fight can be considered exciting or engaging to watch.)

18) Jason Dent vs. Rob Browning (Nothing to recommend watching. Except that it features a Browning?)

19) James Bryan vs. Jeff Lawson (I am not impressed by either fighter.)

BISPING

LIGHTWEIGHTS

ANDRE WINNER 0
JEFF LAWSON 0x
MARTIN STAPLETON 0x
ROSS PEARSON 0

WELTERWEIGHTS

DAVID FAULKNER  0x
DEAN AMASINGER 1x
JAMES WILKS 0
NICK OSCIPZAK 4

HENDERSON

LIGHTWEIGHTS

CAMERON DOLLAR 0
JASON DENT 1
RICHIE WHITSON 4x
SANTINO DEFRANCO 0x

WELTERWEIGHTS

DAMARQUES JOHNSON 5
FRANK LESTER 0
JASON PIERCE 0x
MARK MILLER 0x

Eleventh episode:

Previously on TUF: In the first semi-final fight, Damarques Johnson won a decision over Nick Oscipzak giving Team USA the first slot in the final. Now it’s time for the lightweight semis. Up next hard-hitting Andre Winner of Team UK faces young gun Cameron Dollar. Then British Bulldog Ross Pearson takes on Lone Wolf Jason Dent. Who will earn their place as a finalist and complete their journey to becoming the Ultimate Fighter?

– Intro time. I’ve heard this theme 106 times now. Never gets old. Oh wait. I mean it never stops getting old. Muh bad. At least one of Henderson’s PRIDE clips is thrown in here.

– Training session for Team USA. In the afternoon no doubt. Everyone is working out. Henderson talks about Cameron’s fight with Andre Winner. He’ll guide Cam how to brawl with Andre until he can take him down and use his wrestling.

– We see Cam with his shorts down. He tells Henderson that his stomach hurts when he laughs or coughs. Sounds like there cartilage in his ribs. Henderson says that no matter what by fight time they must be okay. I have a feeling Cam will suffer an easy loss. The guy seems relatively hesitant at first but gets into the striking. Cam expresses an interest to stand and bang. Why would you stand and bang? One punch to the ribs and you’ll be down.

– Henderson keeps telling the assistant coach to not work the ribs. Training ends. Cam confesses to the assistant coach that if he suffers a body shot or a kick to the ribs that he will fall in half. Did he switch attitudes with Jason Pierce? Assistant coach convinces him that he will be unstoppable regardless of a body shot.

– Andre Winner is at 165 pounds. We see him ferociously train. It’s not much time to drop ten pounds but editing doesn’t care so I doubt it’s a big deal. Andre heard that Cam can only throw a right uppercut. Therefore Andre proposes the strategy of keeping it boxing until he knocks Cam out. Better than training a Henderson protege to a wrestling match. Bisping concurs.

– Andre feels ready to go. No bruised ribs for him.

– UK van time. Dean tells us of Andre’s tendency to suck his thumb. Andre denies it in the van and the House. Everyone laughs at him. Dean finds the habit to be funny.

ANDRE: I never suck my thumb. . .except at night and in the van occasionally.

I think you missed the point of the whole conversation, Dre.

– Andre said he was a chain smoker as of two years. Now he’s down to one per day. He claims he only sucks his thumb at night as a way to be confident and relax until he falls asleep. He completely busts up in confessional. The camera zooms in on him sucking his thumb.

CAM: I can’t lose to somebody who sucks their thumb.

– Fight Day. Heavy rock music plays as the players enter their locker rooms. I suppose there will only be one official weigh-in all season.

ANDRE WINNER
LEICESTER, UK
27
5’11
70″
9-2-1

CAMERON DOLLAR
COLORADO SPRINGS, OKLAHOMA. I MEAN COLORADO.
21
5’11
71″
4-1

– Dana introduces the fight.  Rosenthal makes a rare appearance as referee. They touch gloves. They circle. Cam feints and winces. Misses some jabs. Cam throws ferocious overhands until he accidentally pokes. They touch gloves again. Andre is swinging rapidly but Cam is blocking. Cam returns with punches of his own but Dre backs away. Dre lands brutal uppercuts. Cam shoots but Dre defends the takedown. Cam fires a knee to Dre’s body. Dre is against the cage. He lands a knee to Cam’s body. Cam immediately lets go of the body lock and crumbles. Dre rushes in but Cam is back to his feet. Dre misses some strikes until he takes Cam down. Cam gets up and takes Dre down against the cage. Both stand up. Cam knees Dre’s body. Dre knees Cam’s body and Cam goes to his knees again. Dre elbows Cam’s body. Cam has Dre against the cage. Dre furiously punches Cam’s head. And some more. Cam knees Dre’s gut. They are still against the cage. Both trade some big punches. Another body lock as Cam takes Dre to the ground. However Dre lands on top and has full mount. Cam spins to be in Dre’s full guard. Dre slaps on a triangle. It is very tight. Cam punches Dre’s face. Cam taps. End of fight. Andre has the win.

– Andre brags he will be filthy rich one day and hopes he is representing everyone he cares about as well as his country. The dumbest thing he does is sucks his thumb. Bisping is pleased Winner is in the final.

– Cam hates coming this far then lose. He didn’t feel his ribs or his foot during the fight. Both are hurting like mad as he tears up in the locker room. Henderson says the journey to being a champion has bumps in the road. Andre comes in to shake hands with Cam.

– Dana recaps one American welterweight has advanced as well as one British lightweight. It’s still dead even at 5-5.

– Team UK training session. Focus is on Ross. Knows Dent is a well-rounded fighter and is excited to battle such a lad. During a spar session Ross suffers a dislocated shoulder like he is Stephenie LaGrossa. Bisping calls for a medic. Ross orders Bisping to sharply pull his shoulder. You can see it connect back in. Ross said this is an old injury but it’s fine when you get it back into place.

– Ross’ sparring session resumes without any issues. The game plan is to avoid Dent’s jiu jitsu and knock Dent out.

– Dana explains he is not impressed by Dent’s performance (GSP voice). He goes so far as to say Dent’s fight is the least eventful one of the season. I disagree. Dana thinks Dent was playing it safe in his preliminary fight. Dent is pissed off that he heard Dana say his victory was boring.

– Dent knows he is the healthiest guy in the House and intends to prove it. Henderson thinks Dent would do better if he did the things that he knows. We see an extreme close-up of Dent’s elbow bleeding. Dent intends to hang it all out a bit more because it is the last fight.

– Fight Day. Ross recaps he has ate fruit, cereal, a protein shake, and drank a cup o’ tea. Dent stares into the Nevada skies. Everyone suits up as they head into the van. Ross wants to make the fight messy. We see him do some air knees and kicks. Ross wants to make Dent cry. Dent has never won a decision, and thus finds that finishing a fight is the only way to go.

Okay, Nam Pham.

ROSS PEARSON
NOTTINGHAM, UK
24
5’8
69″
9-3

JASON DENT
MENTOR, OHIO
28
5’9
70″
18-9

– Mazzagatti is our referee. They touch gloves. Dent misses a leg kick. Dent misses a head kick. Both are feinting really fast. Ross rushes in and strikes until he has Dent against the cage. Dent has a Muay Thai clinch. He knees Ross’ face. Ross is against the cage. Ross knees Dent’s head until Ross himself falls to the ground. The clinch continues as they are on their feet and Ross has Dent against the cage. Both strike furiously. Reminds me of Takiyama and Don Frye. Clinch breaks.  Ross kicks and punches Dent’s body and face. Many are breaking through the barrier. Dent has a Muay Thai clinch as he lands some knees. He jabs Ross a couple times. And a leg kick. And a body punch. Ross finally counters with a jab. Dent lands a jab. Ross lands a head kick and charges in with punches. Clinch. Dent is against the cage. Both fire short knees and punches. Dent works a Muay Thai clinch. Clinch breaks as Dent punches repeatedly. Dent misses a looping body kick. Ross connects a punch and a head kick. Both dance around. Dent knees Ross’ body. Both trade some punches. Several. Ross is punching Dent’s body relentlessly. Dent punches Ross’ body and face too. They are clinched against the cage. Dent is against the cage. Now Ross. More punches but they miss. Ross lands a jab after clinch breaks. Dent misses a looping kick. Ross rushes in to punch Dent against the cage. He lands some punches to the body. Dent grabs Ross and elbows him. Ross defends but Dent turns the tables with some knees. Clinch breaks. Both trade jabs. Circling. Ross misses an uppercut. Dent lands a body punch and a shoulder punch. He lands a punch that is near to the throat. End of round.

No clue who won that round.

– They touch gloves. Dent lands a leg kick and a head kick. And a body punch. Back to centre of octagon. Ross lands a brutal hook. Dent misses a leg kick and a body punch. Both clinch and strike furiously. Dent lands a jab. Ross misses some strikes. Both miss strikes. Both dance around some more. Ross lands a leg kick. Both miss several more strikes. Ross rushes in again. Dent misses an enormous uppercut. Clinch with Dent against the cage. Dent reverses it using a Muay Thai clinch. Dent knees Ross’ belly. He picks up Ross but Ross stops the takedown. They drift to centre of octagon. Dent lands a leg kick. Ross counters Dent’s jab. Ross body punches. Ross’ jab is blocked. Dent misses a jab. His flying knee is dodged. Both grapple. Dent uppercuts and head kicks and body kicks and body punches and knees in the clinch. Ross picks up Dent and takes Dent to the ground against the cage. Dent is blocking and striking from the bottom. Full guard. Dent i using the cage to get out but Ross nearly gets full mount in the process. Dent clinches and gets back to his feet. Both strike ferociously. Punches to each other’s chins. Body punch. Body kick. Dent is getting the better of the exchange. Clinch is broken. Back to centre of octagon. Ross punches Dent’s right arm. Dent shoots in and has a leg. Ross stops the takedown. Dent is on his back. Ross comes in and PUNISHES Dent. Dent attempts a triangle but Ross escapes and settles for full guard. Dent has butterfly guard. Both strike each other from their respective positions. Dent almost traps an arm but round is over.

Ross won that round.

– Here we go. They touch gloves. Both circle. Dent gets to work immediately with the jabs. He rushes Ross with jabs and a couple kicks. And upper cuts. And a body kick. And a punch to the chin. Ross counters. They circle. Ross messes up Dent’s face with punches and takes Dent to the ground. Dent has an arm around Ross. Ross is on his feet as he squeezes Dent who is sitting against the cage. Back to full guard with Dent on his back. Ross is shoving Dent into the cage. Punches from the top. And short elbows. Hammer fists. Another elbow. Dent upkicks when Ross tries to stand. Ross jumps back into the full guard. Dent appears to have an arm trapped but Ross yanks it out. Dent turtles as Ross has his back. Brutal punches to the ear. Mazzagatti warns about back of the head. Ross works Dent’s right arm. Dent grabs Ross’ left leg. Ross swivels to take Dent’s turtling back. Punches to the ear. Henderson orders Dent to stand up. Ross is back in Dent’s full guard against the cage. Elbows and punches ensue. Dent nearly fires an upkick but Ross dodges the attempt and returns to taking Dent’s turtling back. Dent tries to stand but Ross knees him in the side instead. Dent has a leg but Ross pulls it away and takes Dent’s turtling back yet again. Ross puts Dent on his back. Elbows.  He stands up as Dent is unable to stand up. End of fight.

I assume Ross won that. Really good fight. Best one thus far.

– Ross wins by unanimous decision.

BISPING: Can anyone say ‘All UK final’?

– Dana was impressed with Dent and says it is not the same fighter who was there for the first ten episodes.

DANA: Dent has gained more respect in his loss than he did in his last two wins.

That is a big statement coming from Dana.

– Dent is happy to go home and get his mental training and wants to go back to training.

– Dana introduces the first final between Ross and Andre. Everyone is excited. Andre attempts a takedown.

Next time on TUF: One fight remains to determine who will take on Team USA’s welterweight Damarques Johnson in the final. American hero Frank Lester must once again step into the cage with the man who destroyed his smile–Team UK’s James Wilks. Will history repeat itself or will Frank have his vengeance? Who will move on to fight for the title of the next Ultimate Fighter? I unno.

Rank the Fights

1) Jason Dent vs. Ross Pearson (Easily the best slugfest of the season.)

2) Frank Lester vs. David Faulkner (You know that scene in Matilda where Bruce Bogtrotter raises the cake in triumph but suffers a strike to the head in the process while the audience cheers? The same thing happens in this fight. The conclusion is reminiscent of Sakuraba versus Gracie and when the heavily favoured Gracie when the corner throws the towel into the ring.)

3) Waylon Lowe vs. Santino Defranco (Santino is going to quit. He’ll totally quit at the end of the round. Wait, he’s coming out? Big knee? Rear naked choke? Dang.)

4) Cam Dollar vs. Andre Winner (There is not a moment during the fight where it felt like it dragged. Both aimed for knees, punches, elbows, and kicks to do damage. The ground game was relatively exciting. Andre’s surprising triangle was a great way to end the match. The only demerit is that it’s a shame these two fighters couldn’t have put on a longer fight.

5) Nick Oscipzak vs. Damarques Johnson (A classic brawl for a chunk of the fight. It could have been the best fight of the season if there wasn’t such inactivity during the ground portion of the fight. How the heck did Damarques survive those hooks and uppercuts at the end of the first round?)

6) Jason Dent vs. Jeff Lawson (The energy in the gym was electrifying. Nothing was ever consistent in this fight. Both were frequently aiming for submissions. Sure it wasn’t an emphasized brawling fest but enough big strikes were landed to keep you on your toes. A couple of Lawson’s fakeouts were great. I would also add that Dent’ unorthodox  submission is a welcome relief from the abuse of rear naked chokes.)

7) Mark Miller vs. Nick Oscipzak (So many reversals. Who was in control? Some good strikes too. Yeah they were slow to work at certain moments, but then the knockout kick came.)

8) James Wilks vs. Frank Lester (It was exciting in the stand-up and exciting on the ground. Wilks landed some impressive strikes and knees during the fight. Frank’s inability to go down was worth the prolonged destruction. Oh, and who can forget one of the most iconic images of TUF 9–the four missing teeth? Is that how a Christmas tune was inspired?)

9) AJ Wenn vs. Ross Pearson (Skillful grappling followed by the biggest beatdown of the premiere. Those knees were vicious. How the heck did AJ answer the bell for the second round?

10) Gary Kelly vs. Andre Winner (Perhaps the best fight in terms of striking. They weren’t afraid to go after each other, and that’s what we love to see in MMA. That brutal knee was the best strike of the episode.)

11) Damarques Johnson vs. Ray Elbe (They squared off in the beginning, but Damarques pounded him, pounded him some more, and created one of the biggest gashes in TUF history. I love blood.)

12) Kiel Reid vs. Frank Lester (Two words: Gray Maynard.)

13) Dean Amasinger vs. Damarques Johnson (Seeing a guy struggle helplessly to escape a triangle choke is disturbingly gratifying.)

14) Richie Whitson vs. Ross Pearson (It was a great stand-up battle. Unfortunately it was sullied by a couple of illegal blows that cannot help one but wonder how this fight would have looked if it was played by the rules.)

15) Che Mills vs. James Wilks (Great rally from James as he grabs a leg and taps Che out from the bottom. Granted it was a quick fight.)

16) Cam Dollar vs. Martin Stapleton (Short fight without any memorable strikes except for the one to the top of the head. Textbook rear naked choke. Should be lower, really.)

17) Richie Whitson vs. Paul Bird (Decent striking by both guys. Paul clearly didn’t know what to do on the ground compared to Richie. There was a fine armbar attempt by Paul, but Richie brushed it off and slapped on a textbook rear naked choke on Paul.)

18) Andre Winner vs. Santino DeFranco (Well. . .uh . . .at least Andre finished it relatively quickly. Did Santino do anything worthwhile?

19) Martin Stapleton vs. Dan James (Only about ten seconds of the whole fight can be considered exciting or engaging to watch.)

20) Jason Dent vs. Rob Browning (Nothing to recommend watching. Except that it features a Browning?)

21) James Bryan vs. Jeff Lawson (I am not impressed by either fighter.)

BISPING

LIGHTWEIGHTS

ANDRE WINNER 8
JEFF LAWSON 0x
MARTIN STAPLETON 0x
ROSS PEARSON 7

WELTERWEIGHTS

DAVID FAULKNER  0x
DEAN AMASINGER 2x
JAMES WILKS 0
NICK OSCIPZAK 0x

HENDERSON

LIGHTWEIGHTS

CAMERON DOLLAR 5
JASON DENT 6
RICHIE WHITSON 0x
SANTINO DEFRANCO 0x

WELTERWEIGHTS

DAMARQUES JOHNSON 0
FRANK LESTER 0
JASON PIERCE 0x
MARK MILLER 0x

Twelfth episode:

Previously on TUF: Four remaining lightweights faced off in the octagon. In the first fight, Andre Winner fought off Cameron Dollar’s assault and submitted him with a triangle in round one giving Team UK its first finalist. In the second match-up, Team UK’s Ross Pearson went toe-to-toe with American Jason Dent in an epic three round battle eventually taking the win by unanimous decision.

One spot is still up for grabs to see who will face Damarques Johnson in the finale. Up next James Wilks versus Frank Lester– the re-match. Who will move one step closer to becoming the ultimate fighter?

– Intro time.

– House time. Frank does the worst Dan Henderson impression ever. All Frank does is put two asparagus stalks against his ears. Stephan Bonnar would be pissed. Steak is being fired up on the grill as Dan Henderson pays a visit to the House.

Michael Bisping will go down as the only coach to never visit the TUF House. I suppose visiting the home turf of Team UK wasn’t his idea of fun. Or he is suppressing memories of his own from TUF 3.

– Dan eats his own asparagus. Luckily Diego Sanchez wasn’t there to claim it before he did. Looks like Frank and Santino are the master chefs. Everyone says it is good to get away from the fighting. . .as cameras are stuffed into your face.

– During dinner Henderson brings up Frank’s fight. So much for getting away from fighting.

HENDERSON: Do you cut easy?
FRANK: Not easy.

Three fights in less than four weeks? Will a fourth fight only days later do the trick?

– Frank doesn’t want cauliflower ears. Henderson responds that he likes his ears.

– Night time. Damarques and Frank chat about the fight. They don’t think James is ready to take the type of damage that Frank has proven to take over the past four weeks.

– James thinks they caught more damage than Frank in their first match-up. Dean tells James that Frank has the power, but James has the speed and stamina. Use the jab.

– UK training session. James prepares to beat Frank again. Bisping is confident it will finish in the first round.

– Frank and James meet in the gym. Lester demonstrates that he will headbutt James during the fight.

FRANK: This is my third fight in three weeks. I feel like the cage is my home.

I think even Jeremy Horn is in awe of Frank.

Iron and oxygen never combine in the octagon with Frank. I wonder how many weeks in a row he could do an amateur fight.

– Henderson wants nice straight quick punches. He wants more than the previous fight. We hear an out-of-place audio clip of Henderson telling Frank to relax.

– Frank shows pictures of his kids to James Wilks. They sign each other’s shirts. Both admit to being fond of one another. But only in a homophobic way.

– Frank and James are in the sauna together. Lester admits to fighting James angry despite not knowing him. In the next fight he was relaxed and did better. The lesson is that nobody fights well when they are angry.

– Official weigh-in. Yep. You read that right. Second and final one of the season. Keith Kizer makes his cameo of the season. Both fighters are 171.

– Dana likes this re-match.

– House time again. More food is being cooked. This time it’s Dean by Team UK. It’s their last night together.

Bisping makes an appearance. It took twelve episodes but he finally visited the dreaded place. They talk about UK MMA being represented well.

– James has done some party tricks in the house. He puts a coin against his own forehead then smacks the back of it. It takes four smacks until it comes off. The game is to put the coin against someone else’s forehead and they smack the back of their head until the coin comes off.

This British dilly-dallying is strange.

– The coaches exited. Andre starts spitting his food out. Probably to make room for his thumb. At one point a lump of curry hits Dean square on the neck. I suppose he is kissing the cook by proxy. Uh oh. I sense a food fight. Andre runs outside. Dean tosses chairs and runs outside. They run around the pool. Dean tosses Dre into the pool. As Dre gets out Faulkner pours some flour on him. This is like a bad British improvised comedy act.

– Dre looks like the guy from the Jazz Singer. Faulkner thought it was hilarious. Dean rolls Dre into the pool during the massive fits of laughter. Dre is drooling flour.

– Frank is having a tough time relaxing in bed. He is crying a bit. Damarques says there is nothing to be scared about and instead go in and do his worst. Frank fears letting people down. I can assure you nobody has been let down by you, Frank.

– Fight Day. James presumes it will be a round one submission. Henderson insits the straight jabs will hurt James.

JAMES WILKS
LAGUNA HILLS, CALIFORNIA
30
6’1
75″
5-2

FRANK LESTER
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA
24
5’11
71″
3-2

– Herby is our referee. They touch gloves. Dancing around commences. James feints. Frank’s jabs are blocked. James misses a leg kick. James lands a punch square on the chin. Frank misses a huge overhand. James accidentally kicks the groin. Time is stopped. Henderson says to straighten those punches. They touch gloves. Frank leg kicks. Both throw jabs. James misses a leg kick. James body kicks. Henderson calls for a jab. James punches Franks’ face a bit. Frank fires a jab. Frank connects with a leg kick. James’ combination is blocked. Frank lightly connects with a leg kick. Both are missing jabs. Frank fires a straight right that lands hard. Frank counters some of James’ punches but doesn’t land. Neither of them are landing much. Frank connects with a leg kick. Some circling. Frank lands another leg kick. Both land big jabs. James’ jab lands the cleanest. Frank is bleeding. Both are countering jabs. James shoots and shoves Frank against the cage. Frank defends as he puts James against the cage. Henderson calls for knees. James reverses it. Both fire big punches. Frank is shooting wide. Both grapple again as Frank is against the cage. They run a bit in the clinch until James has Frank against the cage. Both fire short punches. Frank tries a knee. Clinch is broken. James lands a jab. Frank lands a leg kick. Frank’s punches are too wild. Both size each other up. End of round. James won that round.

– They touch gloves. Frank accidentally kicks James’ groin. It’s even now. Henderson coaches Frank on the jab. Both of them are limping. Both feint numerous times. They exchange jabs simultaneously.  James lands a head kick. Frank lightly connects a looping leg kick. Frank fires a jab. And misses. Frank lands a jab. James lands a massive jab. Frank punches wildly until he fires a leg kick. James fires a front kick. Both fire jabs and exchange. Frank’s overhand punches are swinging for the fences. James punches Frank’s face and fires a front kick as well as a leg kick. Both land punches and kicks. James feints a few times until he shoots. He misses a knee. James has Frank against the cage in the clinch. Wilks is working hard on the takedown. Nothing is happening except sliding along the cage. Wilks lands a straight left and throws a jab. Frank’s face is bleeding bad. Frank fires some punches and a body kick. James’ punches land consistently. Frank’s overhand punches are too wild. James keeps jabbing some more.  James lands a massive head kick. James rushes in hoping to take Frank down. Frank shoots and has a single on James. James is punching Frank’s head. James turns Frank into the cage. Muay Thai clinch. Three knees to the face of Frank. Both trade punches. Wilks lands a leg kick. James connects with two ferocious jabs. End of round.

James wins this round too.

– Final round. They touch gloves. Frank punches James a couple times. James returns the favour. Frank lands a leg kick. James misses a front kick and a jab. James lands a leg kick. He lands a big hook and another then knees the face. He grapples Frank against the cage. James works the takedown but Frank is defending. Clinch is broken. Frank lands a couple jabs. James jabs a couple times then clinches Frank and delivers knees. James runs Frank into the octagon to Henderson’s corner. James quickly pulls Frank further away. James knees Frank’s body. James knees Frank’s face in a half Muay Thai clinch. Frank crumbles. James proceeds to knee twice more until Herby calls the fight. End of fight. James celebrates on the octagon’s railing.

– Fight recap. Bisping told James not to brawl like an idiot. It worked. The calm, cool, and collected style worked out well.

You know how only coaches and the two warriors comment on the fight? Well, we get our first and only comment from someone who watched the fight during the season.

MARK: James kinda being a prick during the fight. Doing some flashy stuff and knocking Frank’s style. I thought it was pretty gay.

Hellooooooo homophobia.

DAMARQUES: James tries to taunt me he is only going to make it worse for himself because I will take that Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt and shove it up his a–. God that guy pisses me off.

– Henderson says Frank got his nose bleeding again. We see a montage of Frank being beat up. Holy crap he took a beating.

So that’s what happens when you fight three weeks in a row as well as accumulating four fights in five weeks. Easily the toughest fighter I have ever seen compete in MMA.

– Sad music plays for our fallen hero. Frank shakes everyone off and heads for the locker room. He whines that he gave up and was tired. Henderson consoles him.

HENDERSON: You fought harder than anyone else here.

Even more than Pierce. Oh wait.

– Frank feels sorry for his daughter and wants the money.

FRANK: I’ve fought four times in 34 days.

Correct my earlier statement. Four fights in LESS than five weeks. Jesus.

– Bisping is bragging that the Brits won the season. 4-4 regular season plus 3-1 in playoffs equals a 7-5 record.

BISPING: Lonely in there, D?
DAMARQUES: I ain’t scared. This ain’t my first rodeo.

DAMARQUES: Everyone on Team UK are good guys. Except for James.

Not to single anybody out or anything.

– Dana announces the welterweight match-up. They square off. James admits he was confident in his ability to get to the final and confident he would win.

– Henderson locker room. Sad music resumes as Frank sulks. Henderson says if Demarques wins then it is all tied and will come down to the coach’s battle.

– Henderson goes over to the UK locker room to congratulate all of them.

HENDERSON: Bisping is an okay guy. But for lack of a better word he is a d—-bag.

– Bisping wonders if he could do better being calm, cool, and collected like Dan. He thinks though that this is his time and that Dan already had his time.

– Dana says three Brits in the finale equates to MMA growing around the world. He predicts it will be the biggest sport in the world in ten years.

– The cutman comes in the UK room and says Team UK will win. Most random cameo ever.

– Next time on TUF: After a 6-week nation versus nation war, the match-ups are set. On June 20th from The Palms, it’s the TUF finale. Ross Pearson brings his rage into the cage against fellow countryman Andre Winner who hopes to continue his streak of first round finishes.

Then submission specialist James Wilks will face lone American and Team USA favourite Damarques Johnson.

For the main event TUF season 1 winner Diego Sanchez will face Clay Guida who has won his two previous fights against TUF winners.

Then on July 11th the coaches enter the octagon at UFC 100. TUF 3 champion Bisping faces MMA legend Dan Henderson.

Rank the Fights

1) Jason Dent vs. Ross Pearson (Easily the best slugfest of the season.)

2) Frank Lester vs. David Faulkner (You know that scene in Matilda where Bruce Bogtrotter raises the cake in triumph but suffers a strike to the head in the process while the audience cheers? The same thing happens in this fight. The conclusion is reminiscent of Sakuraba versus Gracie and when the heavily favoured Gracie when the corner throws the towel into the ring.)

3) Waylon Lowe vs. Santino Defranco (Santino is going to quit. He’ll totally quit at the end of the round. Wait, he’s coming out? Big knee? Rear naked choke? Dang.)

4) Cam Dollar vs. Andre Winner (There is not a moment during the fight where it felt like it dragged. Both aimed for knees, punches, elbows, and kicks to do damage. The ground game was relatively exciting. Andre’s surprising triangle was a great way to end the match. The only demerit is that it’s a shame these two fighters couldn’t have put on a longer fight.

5) Nick Oscipzak vs. Damarques Johnson (A classic brawl for a chunk of the fight. It could have been the best fight of the season if there wasn’t such inactivity during the ground portion of the fight. How the heck did Damarques survive those hooks and uppercuts at the end of the first round?)

6) Jason Dent vs. Jeff Lawson (The energy in the gym was electrifying. Nothing was ever consistent in this fight. Both were frequently aiming for submissions. Sure it wasn’t an emphasized brawling fest but enough big strikes were landed to keep you on your toes. A couple of Lawson’s fakeouts were great. I would also add that Dent’ unorthodox  submission is a welcome relief from the abuse of rear naked chokes.)

7) Mark Miller vs. Nick Oscipzak (So many reversals. Who was in control? Some good strikes too. Yeah they were slow to work at certain moments, but then the knockout kick came.)

8) James Wilks vs. Frank Lester (It was exciting in the stand-up and exciting on the ground. Wilks landed some impressive strikes and knees during the fight. Frank’s inability to go down was worth the prolonged destruction. Oh, and who can forget one of the most iconic images of TUF 9–the four missing teeth? Is that how a Christmas tune was inspired?)

9) AJ Wenn vs. Ross Pearson (Skillful grappling followed by the biggest beatdown of the premiere. Those knees were vicious. How the heck did AJ answer the bell for the second round?

10) Gary Kelly vs. Andre Winner (Perhaps the best fight in terms of striking. They weren’t afraid to go after each other, and that’s what we love to see in MMA. That brutal knee was the best strike of the episode.)

11) Damarques Johnson vs. Ray Elbe (They squared off in the beginning, but Damarques pounded him, pounded him some more, and created one of the biggest gashes in TUF history. I love blood.)

12) Kiel Reid vs. Frank Lester (Two words: Gray Maynard.)

13) Dean Amasinger vs. Damarques Johnson (Seeing a guy struggle helplessly to escape a triangle choke is disturbingly gratifying.)

14) James Wilks vs. Frank Lester (Three rounds of dirty boxing. Dirty boxing is not exactly the most exciting style. James dominated about ninety percent of the fight as well. From the first minute you could see Frank was too spent from fighting three long fights that there was nothing in the tank compared to how little time James has spent fighting. James make it into the finale by landing a couple knees to drain an out-classed Frank Lester.)

15) Richie Whitson vs. Ross Pearson (It was a great stand-up battle. Unfortunately it was sullied by a couple of illegal blows that cannot help one but wonder how this fight would have looked if it was played by the rules.)

16) Che Mills vs. James Wilks (Great rally from James as he grabs a leg and taps Che out from the bottom. Granted it was a quick fight.)

17) Cam Dollar vs. Martin Stapleton (Short fight without any memorable strikes except for the one to the top of the head. Textbook rear naked choke. Should be lower, really.)

18) Richie Whitson vs. Paul Bird (Decent striking by both guys. Paul clearly didn’t know what to do on the ground compared to Richie. There was a fine armbar attempt by Paul, but Richie brushed it off and slapped on a textbook rear naked choke on Paul.)

19) Andre Winner vs. Santino DeFranco (Well. . .uh . . .at least Andre finished it relatively quickly. Did Santino do anything worthwhile?

20) Martin Stapleton vs. Dan James (Only about ten seconds of the whole fight can be considered exciting or engaging to watch.)

21) Jason Dent vs. Rob Browning (Nothing to recommend watching. Except that it features a Browning?)

22) James Bryan vs. Jeff Lawson (I am not impressed by either fighter.)

BISPING

LIGHTWEIGHTS

ANDRE WINNER 1
JEFF LAWSON 0x
MARTIN STAPLETON 3x
ROSS PEARSON 1

WELTERWEIGHTS

DAVID FAULKNER  1x
DEAN AMASINGER 2x
JAMES WILKS 8
NICK OSCIPZAK 1x

HENDERSON

LIGHTWEIGHTS

CAMERON DOLLAR 0x
JASON DENT 0x
RICHIE WHITSON 0x
SANTINO DEFRANCO 0x

WELTERWEIGHTS

DAMARQUES JOHNSON 4
FRANK LESTER 8
JASON PIERCE 0x
MARK MILLER 1x

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