mma

The Ultimate Fighter 17, Episode 6: Oh, you mean this is EDITED?!

Before we begin, we’re reminded of a couple of minor issues from the season so far:

1. Josh might be speaking up a bit too much within Team Jones.

2. Uriah Hall was upset that someone corrected his word choice — cooker? Chef?

3. Dana White is blinking a lot in his closeup.

Chael Sonnen stops by to reassure Bubba McDaniel. Again, when did Sonnen become such a nice guy?

Moving ahead to the next fight, Sonnen is once again building up the other guy. He would’ve loved to have Josh on his team, but Tor Troeng is a sleeper.

No one seems to know anything about him other than he’s from Sweden and his teammates are making him a hammer. Because he’s “Thor,” right? Several roles of tape later, the hammer starts to look pretty good.

But we have discord on Team Sonnen. Hall is holding his hands low in sparring, so Luke Barnatt peppers him with a few light jabs. Hall responds by throwing hard. In confessional, Barnatt says Hall isn’t a team player, has an attitude, is an ego-driven machine, etc.

Maybe that’s what Hall means with this tweet:

Then Barnatt segues to a discussion of Americans always overlooking Europeans like Tor. The MMA scene is huge in Sweden. Also, Spinal Tap is big in Japan.

We meet Tor. He does math. He trains. Umm … can anyone say anything about him?

Sonnen to the rescue! He knows more about martial arts than anyone on Team Sonnen, but he’s unassuming and says little.

Out of nowhere, Tor lays a philosophical gem on us: “Speaking is silver and silence is gold.” Now I feel guilty about continuing this recap. Ah well — no one’s going to click on a blank blog.

After a break, we see Team Jones shadowboxing. At night. In the backyard of the house. Huh?

“Josh … thinks he’s coach,” says Dylan Andrews. Funny how each team has a complaining Englishman.

Adam Cella: “Josh is the guy I call ‘dad’ here.” We see him lecturing people on their diets. And the proper way to cut onions. Dude, everyone has a different way of cutting onions. I had a relative once tell me my girlfriend was doing it wrong.

Josh recounts his first tryout for TUF. He wound up with a blood clot and went in for surgery. Right before getting the anesthetic, the doctor tells him when he wakes up, he might feel a little dizzy. No, wait — they tell Josh might have only one leg. That’s a little more serious.

More about Josh: He was academically gifted and not allowed to do anything violent (football, playing with guns, etc.).

Oh wait, we’re not done with Hall and Barnatt. Gilbert Smith asks people who they want to fight, and Hall says “Biggs.” That’s apparently Barnatt, not the guy from Tatooine who died in the attack on the Death Star. Barnatt wonders who would say he’s ready to fight a teammate before the prelims are even done. Kevin Casey doesn’t like that.

Maybe that’s what Hall means with this tweet:

So Hall goes and hangs out with Team Jones. Smith starts recruiting him for the team, then badgering him about calling out Barnatt. Hall says he was joking. But it was the truth. But he shouldn’t have said it. Now Hall wants to talk about something else. Someone offers up a little comment about an upcoming field trip to a casino.

Then suddenly (at least according to the edit monster), Hall asks Cella if his girlfriend is a bitch like him. That requires some explaining.

Maybe that’s what Hall means with this tweet:

The next morning, Hall is reliving the conversation for Bubba McDaniel. He wants to get away from it, so he goes jogging through some leaves on a beautiful fall landscape, passing by a gazebo … wait, where the hell is he?!

Everyone goes bowling at the Red Rock. Fights are on big screens. Everyone’s having fun. Jones starts giving the usual interview about relaxing when Sonnen videobombs him, jumping into the camera frame. He challenges Jones to a three-frame bowling match in which the loser has to wear the winner’s shirt through a training session.

Sonnen: “I am not a bowler but I know HOW to bowl. … This isn’t rocket science.”

It’s far more entertaining than the Hughes-Serra coaches’ challenge, which took place at the same venue. But Jones still runs off a la Hughes after a close loss.

Fight day, and someone has drawn a “Thor Smash!” cartoon, reminding us all to pay tribute to the “Tour day schmalz,” the excellent Tour de France recaps at NYVelocity.com.

Sonnen tells Tor that he’d be thrilled if this fight exposes some holes in the Swede’s game. Then they could work on them and get him back in the wild card. Um … thanks, coach?

Josh said his experience was the reason he gravitated toward a leadership role. The tale of the tape tells us Tor has 20 fights to Josh’s 11.

It’s not a bad fight. Josh, wearing shorts not quite as tight as Colton Smith’s but in the neighborhood, trades positions with Tor several times. Tor ends up on top on the ground, but with Frank Mir yelling instructions, Josh scrambles out and lands several punches while they’re at an awkward angle. They stand, and Josh lands a massive knee to the body. After another exchange, Tor starts backpedaling across the cage. Josh lands a good body kick, Tor drops his hands, and Josh lands a massive 1-2 combo to the head. Tor falls instantly, and Herb Dean races in to pull Josh away. Might be KO of the season if not for Hall’s stunner.

Jones gets to pick. His last two fighters are top pick Clint Hester and last pick Dylan Andrews. He sends out Hester vs. Jimmy Quinlan. Sonnen is surprised, hailing Quinlan’s grappling skills against Hester’s boxing.

That only leaves two more fighters. They don’t say so, but the last match of this round, barring injury, has to be Andrews vs. Zak Cummings.

Scenes from next week: Josh Sannan’s leg acts up and sends him to the hospital, and the guys get a night on the town. At Hooters. Seriously? What, they spend all the production money on the new cameras?

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1 reply »

  1. You must not know much about Chael Sonnen. He’s a very nice guy when he’s not trying to promote himself. Anyone can see that the trash-talking is just to get people to pay attention.

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