411's The Ultimate Fighter 17 Report 03.12.13
Posted by Wyatt Beougher on 03.12.2013
Jon Jones and Chael Sonnen operate heavy equipment in the coaches' challenge, Zak Cummings represents Team Sonnen against Dylan Andrews and more! Check out 411's full The Ultimate Fighter report for all the details!
The Ultimate Fighter 17: Team Jones vs Team Sonnen, Episode 8
Welcome back to 411 MMA's coverage of the seventeenth season of The Ultimate Fighter. Last week, we saw the continued fallout from Uriah Hall alienating nearly everyone in the house, the fighters got a night out at Hooters, Josh had to visit the emergency room, and Team Sonnen regained control when Jimmy Quinlan submitted Team Jones' top pick, Clint Hester. This week will not only feature the final, non-Wild Card preliminary round fight between Zak Cummings and Dylan Andrews, but it will also see the coaches' challenge featuring Chael and Jon operating excavators. I'm actually very interested in seeing how they do in the heavy equipment, as that's something I see on a daily basis at my job.
Meet the Cast:
TEAM JONES Jon Jones, Head Coach
Stonehorse Goeman, Muay Thai coach
Bubba Jenkins, Wrestling coach
Frank Mir, Jiu Jitsu coach
TEAM SONNEN Chael Sonnen, Head Coach
Vinny Magalhaes, Jiu Jitsu coach
Mike Dolce, Strength and conditioning coach/dietician
Clayton Hires, Striking coach
Jamie Huey, Striking coach
TEAM JONES Clint Hester
Josh Samman Bubba McDaniel Gilbert Smith Jr
Collin Hart Adam Cella
Zak Cummings Tor Troeng
Jimmy Quinlan Kevin Casey
FADE IN: Bubba and Adam are talking about the Wild Card, and Adam thinks Bubba deserves the Wild Card more than Clint. We segue to a Team Jones training session and Stonehorse is working kick counters with Dylan to teach him how to break a leg. Jones thinks that this fight is a great fight for Team Jones, but he knows Zak is an experienced fighter with a great record and he won his elimination fight by knockout in 10 seconds. He thinks Dylan's got his hands full, but he thinks it's still a winnable fight. Dylan talks about going to Australia to look for UFC tapes, and how dust from the ceiling starting falling down and he could hear pounding, so he walked outside and looked upstairs and there was a Lion's Den training center. He went upstairs and saw a heavyweight hitting a heavy bag that made the dust, as well as a wrestling ring. He says he went into the gym and never left and he's been there for six years. Dylan talks about growing up in a hydroponic room with his bed surrounded by marijuana plants and how his brothers were extremely talented but chose to give it up for drugs. He believes their failures were so that he could make it. Dylan and Uriah are talking about being afraid to fight but being good at it and how they don't have a lot of other things that they're really good at, and Uriah talks about how it felt like he was talking to himself. Dylan tells Uriah about his family giving up on what they were good at and how their lives are s***, and how he doesn't think he can be successful without fighting. He closes with, "As much as I hate it, I have to do it."
Back at the house, Zak is talking about possibly becoming an engineer and how he was always good at math, and he says people always thought that he was too smart to "just fight", but after seeing his dedication and determination, they're all on board. Zak talks about how, growing up, he was an "anti-fighter" and he was never in a street fight and never got in trouble. While Zak is sparring, Chael confides that he has faith in Zak, but he's such an unknown that he's worried about this fight. Zak says this opportunity is a long time coming, but he's in a better place as a person and fighter and he doesn't think he would've been able to handle the house earlier in his life, as he would've started drinking and screwed it up. Chael says both guys never wait and keep a high pace, and this is the fight, more than any other, that people think is going to be close.
Coaches' Challenge, and Dana talks about how it's his favorite part of the season because the pressure is all on the coaches and the fighters just get to relax and cheer on their coaches. Chael and Jon will do three different events in the excavators and the winning coach will get $10,000, and each fighter on the winning team gets $1500. Those Cat 315C excavators are a pretty popular model and fall pretty much right in the middle of the spectrum as far as size goes. It's going to be interesting to see how these guys handle them - they'd probably do a lot better on smaller models, but the controls on those also tend to be a lot more sensitive, so I can see why they went with the size that they did.
The first event is filling a 14-yard dumpster with dirt, followed by moving large tires from point a to point b, and finally, they have to scoop a basketball off of a cone and then dump it inside a tire. Chael says he's never been in an excavator, but his father-in-law owns an excavation company so had he known this is what the challenge would be, he would've called him for advice. Jones says he's here to win, and Dana talks about this being the first time it wasn't simply sports related. Jones gets off to a very good start, and Dana thinks he's done it before, but Chael quickly picks up the slack and finishes the first event well ahead of Jones. Chael starts moving the tires and he also starts trash-talking Jones, asking him if he knows that they said "go". Chael has a two tire to none head start on Jones, who doesn't seem to be having any luck with the tires. Chael continues the trash talk and Jones is laughing, but you can tell he's getting frustrated. Chael has a very hard time stacking his third tire on top and he gets frustrated, but Jones recovers and ends up with his tires stacked first, so he heads towards the basketball and he's clearly excited. (And no, those excavators don't weigh a million pounds). Jones scoops the basketball up on his first try, but he can't get the ball in the hole. Chael comes racing back down, scoops up the ball, and deposits it inside the tire on his first try. Jones lets out a yell of frustation and says Chael has won the bowling tournament and the coaches' challenge, but he's here to win the fights. Chael talks about how great it was to see his guys celebrate when he dropped the ball inside the tire and he was so glad to have them cheering for him because he's been cheering for them this whole season.
Time for weigh-ins, and Zak is up first. Luke says Zak is tough and will fight within the last inch of his life. Zak makes weight, and Andrew is up next. Adam says Dylan is going to come out on top because he doesn't think we've seen the potential in him and he's going to surprise people. Bubba says Dylan doesn't know how hard he hits, and he knows Zak likes to stand and bang, but he thinks Dylan might put an end to that. Dylan also makes weight, and King thinks the fight may go all three rounds.
Fight day, and Zak talks about his mental state before the fight. He thinks about every situation, but he tries to stay positive. He says he's got heart, he's been in some wars, but he's battle-tested. He says he's glad he was in the last prelim fight because he had a chance to get comfortable in the house and now he's mentally, physically, and emotionally ready to go. Dylan talks about how much he loves his kids (7-year-old son and 4-year-old daughter) and he says he can do anything with the support of his family. He talks about leaving his family, putting them through hell when he said he wouldn't do that anymore, just because of how badly he wanted to be here. Chael says they don't know what to expect, because Dylan's a good fighter, but he didn't stand out, while Zak had a 4-second KO that was a bit of a fluke. Jones says it will be a striking match because Dylan's got good punches and kicks. Dylan says he'll do whatever it takes to win the fight, whether it be punches, kicks, submission, ground and pound, KO, whatever. Jones says "eyes see it, body pulls the trigger, it's your time now" and Dylan is out. Dylan says he wants to go out, have fun, enjoy the experience he's given, and he expects a tough fight, the fight of the season, with Zak. Zak says he's seen everything anyone can throw at him in training, so nothing's going to surprise him. Zak says when you get two hard-nosed guys with a bag of tricks in there that they know how to use, fireworks can happen. He says when the cage door closes, there's a moment of "what the hell am I doing in here", but he knows this is his chance to be the Ultimate Fighter. Tale of the Tape, and Zak is Dylan is slightly older, slightly taller, has a very slight reach advantage, and a very slight experience advantage.
Round 1: Touch of the gloves and we're off! They trade jabs, twice, and Zak whiffs on a hook. Zak ducks a punch and looks for the single leg, but Chael shouts for him to go for a double. They grapple for position on the cage and Zak dumps Dylan, but Dylan stands back up immediately. Dlyan with a leg kick, but Zak with a combination that looks to momentarily stun Dylan and Zak jumps on him, looking for what appears to be a neck crank. Zak almost had mount, but he transitions to side control to put more torque on the hold, then lets go of Dylan's head to drop some nasty elbows. Dylan gets one of Zak's legs, but Zak continues to alternate between the neck crank and the elbows. Zak transitions to mount, but Dylan bucks him off and transitions into guard. Zak ties up Dylan well, but Dylan does manage to get an arm free and he lands a pair of big elbows of his own. Dylan is bleeding ALL OVER Zak and he lands a punch, then another, and Chael is yelling for Zak to open his guard and stand up. Dylan keeps landing punches and Zak tries to push him off, but Dylan stacks him up. Dylan with a short elbow and Zak answers with some punches from the bottom, but Dylan absolutely tees off on Zak with a combination of punches and elbows. Zak trying to improve his position, but Dylan doing a good job of holding him down and beating him up, and that's how the round ends.
Scorecard: Andrews, 10-9 (Incredibly close round that could've gone either direction. I think Zak did more damage - at least going by blood and the fact that he staggered Dylan - but with Dylan finishing the round in control, I'd imagine that he won.)
Round 2: Both coaches told their fighters to keep it standing between rounds, and Zak comes out jabbing and he mostly whiffs on a combo before throwing a spinning back kick that Dylan blocks. Zak with a Superman punch that doesn't land and Dylan lands a nice leg kick. Zak lands a combo, Dylan backs off, Zac jumps in with a flying knee, and Dylan plants him and works from guard. He drops a short elbow to Zak's face and moves to half-guard. He throws a couple of punches, but Zak blocks the impact and does a good job of tying his arm up and looking for the kimura. Dylan with some more weak punches and then a nice short elbow. Zak throws a punch from the bottom, but Dylan drops more short elbows. Herb Dean tells them to work and Zak ties Dylan up. Another warning from Herb to work, and Dylan breaks free of Zak's hold and starts dropping elbows. Zak leans in to him and Dylan throws a flurry of punches. Zak keeps putting his face against Dylan's torso, but Dylan pushes his head down each time and drops a big elbow. Zak tries to push off the cage, but Dylan hangs on and he continues to land punches to Zak's face. Dylan goes back to the short elbows and he's doing an excellent job of holding Zak down. With about 45 seconds left, he starts dropping HUGE elbows on Zak, who finally pushes off of the cage and turns, but Dylan stays beside him. Zak looks for a kimura again, but Dylan gets his arm free and stands up. He finishes the round standing over Zak.
Scorecard: Andrews, 10-9 (That round wasn't even close, but it all depends on how they score the first one.)
Keith Kizer looks high out of his mind as he announces that it's over. We get Dana narrating what happened, with Zak controlling the early part of the first round. Dylan felt like he was going to tap to the neck crank, but he "went to another place" and didn't. Dana talks about Zak turning and Dylan ending up in control and Zak not being able to do anything from the bottom. Jones talks about Dylan getting the early takedown in the second round and making sure Zak never got back to his feet, and Chael talks about how they were losing the fight second by second with Dylan on top in the second.
Official Result - Winner: Dylan Andrews, Majority Decision (20-18x2, 19-19)
They embrace in the ring and Dylan says getting dropped and put into a submission was a life-changing event for him and he's happy and proud of how it turned out. Zak says he's hoping for the Wild Card, but if it's not now, he's going to fight again, and he's just got to show that he's improved. Dana breaks down the Wild Card briefly and then he collects Chael and Jon and says he's going to just let the coaches figure out the Wild Card on his own. Dana tells them he usually just picks the guys, but he's going to let them choose between Kevin Casey and Zak Cummings on Team Sonnen and Bubba McDaniels and Clint Hester on Team Jones. Those are the guys that are eligible and he says he's going to leave it up to the coaches. Jones says it's another curveball. Chael says he's got a guy that belongs in the tournament in Kevin Casey who he thinks underperformed, but he says Jon has a very tough decision as Bubba should be a finalist and potentially a champion, but Clint surprised him. Jones says he thinks Clint will have a bigger fire under him as a result of underperforming against Jimmy. Jones goes back in and says he's in a tough spot, because he trains with Bubba everyday, but Clint is cool as cool can be...and black, which draws a great deal of laughter. He says they need to flip a coin, and Chael says Jones is under a great deal of political pressure because he knows Bubba and has trained with him for years and actually told him he'd be the Wild Card...but that was before his number one pick lost. Someone on Team Jones suggests letting Chael pick, but Jones quickly shoots that down, saying it'd be crazy. Jones says it was very hard to pick because both guys were looking him in the eyes in a very personal way to pick them, and he felt like he was betraying a friend. Time for the Wild Card announcement, and Jones talks about how hard it was. He says he picked the fighter who put more years into getting what he wants, and he picks Bubba. Bubba says he knows it was very tough, but he thinks Jones has a certain amount of loyalty to him, and he doesn't care how the decision came about, but he's back in it. Chael announces King, they have a staredown, and King says this is a once in a lifetime opportunity and he's going to smash Bubba. Bubba says this is the fight that he wanted, that he tried to set up by calling out King, and that Casey doesn't have any idea what he's in for.
NEXT WEEK ON THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER: The teams have a Thanksgiving dinner and Bubba complains about guys complaining about not getting enough of this or that while he's still got to make weight. Bubba and Kevin finally meet, and "one man will move on to the quarterfinals in one of the most shocking finishes in TUF history"!
For your convenience, here are the teams as they stand now (color coded for easy reading):
TEAM JONES Clint Hester
Josh Samman Bubba McDaniel (Wild Card) Gilbert Smith Jr
Collin Hart Adam Cella
Uriah Hall Zak Cummings Tor Troeng
Jimmy Quinlan Kevin Casey (Wild Card)
KEY: Fighters with name crossed out have been eliminated from the competition; fighters with name in italics are Wild Card fighters