The Ultimate Fighter: Season 13 Episode 8: “Shut Him Up”

Before tonight’s episode of TUF, in the wildcard Chuck O’Neil transformed from “Trash-bag Charlie” to “Cold Steel” as he choked out Javier Torres in convincing fashion. And in tonight’s first quarterfinal fight, quiet ninja Ramsey Nijem takes on tough guy Clay Harvison, while Shamar Bailey finally gets his wish, as he looks to shut up Chris Cope in the cage.

From the beginning of the episode, there are concerns. Shamar admits that he’s got some pain in his back and fears that he’s pushed himself too hard. But he’s will to fight through the pain to fight Crhis and to shut him up once and for all.

At Team Dos Santos training, Junior works with Ramsey on his stand-up, knowing that that is likely where Clay will try to keep the fight. Junior considers Ramsey to be the best wrestler on his team, so if he’s able to get Clay he knows it’ll be all over. With family from war-torn Palestine, he sees wrestling as a survival skill and is really just happy to be fighting in a cage and not for his life. How many guys can say that?

Later, Dana brings Brian Stann in for a surprise visit to speak with the guys. As a Marine prior to fighting, he talks about all the things that he learned from being in the military and how he has used those skills to his advantage — namely the discipline. He stresses the importance of dedication, the training and making the right decisions. Brock jokes at the end that maybe some of the guys could benefit from enlisting.

Brock gets Clay and Chris together to work on their wrestling. Clay needs some work, especially knowing how good Ramsey is at it. Brock is pleased to see how quickly Clay is picking up some of the takedown defense moves. He hopes that stuffing his takedowns will help to discourage Ramsey and leave him open for Clay’s stand-up.

After the weigh-ins, Ramsey is complaining about feeling sick (I think we could’ve done without the belching, thanks!) but he’s pumped and ready to fight.

FIGHT DAY

ROUND 1
They both swing big and miss right away but Ramsey quickly has Clay down. Ramsey swings around and tries to mount Clay’s back. He nearly gets shaken off, but quickly remounts with one leg locked around. Clay is on all fours, allowing Ramsey to pepper him with headshots. Clay sprawls and opens himself up too much allowing Ramsey to get his arms under his chin. Ramsey pulls tight and Clay taps almost immediately.

Winner: Ramsey Nijem via Submission (Rear Naked Choke)

Clay is pissed at himself for losing to “Stripper Ramsey” but Dana pats him on the back, and tells him not to be upset considering he was fighting a week after busting his knuckle. Brock is very nonchalant about the loss, but when away from Clay all but calls him an idiot for giving up his back to a wrestler. Even Chris tries to make an excuse out of Clay’s knuckle. Hey guys, how about giving Ramsey some credit?

Next to fight will be Shamar, who Junior has the utmost confidence in. Shamar is using Chris’s tendency to scream at random moments as his motivation to beat him. His gameplan is to keep him backpedaling and off balance on his feet, and to then take him down to finish him off. He believes it is pretty much his fight for the taking.

Despite Shamar’s hatred for Chris, the feeling is not mutual. Brock’s advice to Chris is to continue pestering him. But wisely, Chris sees that he has nothing to lose in this fight but everything to gain which is exactly the opposite for Shamar. His plan is to keep fending Shamar off and wearing him out. Brock tells him he’s just got to “own Burger King.” Dana wonders if Chris, who is just having fun with it all, can expose Shamar as the very one-sided fighter he saw in the first fight.

FIGHT DAY

ROUND 1
Shamar comes out swinging and pushing Chris back as he said he would. Chris just keeps circling to avoid it. Shamar reaches in but misses. Shamar’s looking anxious and trying to pick his shots but he looks impatient. Chris finally throws a combo and Shamar shoots at his waist. Pegging him against the cage with one leg up, Shamar allows Chris to pepper his head and body with short shots. Shamar holds onto that one leg and struggles to get Chris down, but Chris sprawls. Chris pulls away and they return to center. More dancing and circling, until Shamar unleashes a combo that backs Chris up. In the clinch, they both land a few knees. Shamar has control, but Chris is the one landing shots and staying busy. Chris frees himself and dances around the cage which looks like is frustrating Shamar. He keeps dropping his guard. Shamar charges again, and allows Chris to land several hammer fists while on the cage. In a final push, Shamar shoots, but once again is unable to do much as the round ends.

Uh, what was that Shamar?

ROUND 2
And the dance continues. A nice exchange where both land a couple jabs. Shamar goes in and Chris catches him with a right. Chris is staying light and avoiding Shamar’s shots. Shamar throws a right, and Chris throws 2. Shamar shoots and they clinch where they alternate knees. Shamar changes his mind and backs off. Chris swings big, but Shamar ducks in time. A combo from Chris lands this time. Now Chris is going offensive, but Shamar decides to shoot. The clinch doesn’t last though and they stay on their feet. They’re both swinging big, but Chris is always throwing combos instead of Shamar’s single jabs. A big overhand from Chris misses. With a minute left, they clinch and Shamar is bleeding. They briefly stand, but Shamar shoots again and the round ends as Chris is landing hammer after hammer.

Winner: Chris Cope via Decision

Shamar’s gameplan = gone out the window. Shamar couldn’t control the stand-up. Chris stuffed every one of Shamar’s takedowns. While Shamar had a lot of the control, he just couldn’t overcome Chris.

JDS is shocked with end result, but in reality, Shamar couldn’t win it. He got showed up. Shamar catches Dana and says that he wanted to show the judges a different side of his game, that he’s not just a wrestler and that he could’ve taken Chris down if he wanted. Dana points out that he did try several times to take Chris down, but Shamar explains that he pulled something in his back. So which is it Shamar? You could have taken him down but you chose not to? Or your back was hurt so you couldn’t do it? Excuses, excuses….

Looks like Chris will not be shutting up any time soon :)

Next: With the pressure mounting, Tony goes ballistic. Then two more quarterfinal fights: Cold-Steel Chuck O’Neil takes on Zach Davis in a rematch and Tony Ferguson fights Ryan McGillivray. The show will end with the semi-final fight announcements. Eight episodes in and the fights are finally getting better!

The Ultimate Fighter: Season 13 Episode 5: “Wow Me”

Previously on The Ultimate Fighter, Assistant Coach Lew overstepped his bounds, forcing Junior to put him in his place. Team Lesnar suspected Chris Cope of spying for the other team. Team Dos Santos earned their third win when Ramsey Nijem pulled off a rear naked choke over Charlie Rader. And after the fight, Brock lashed out at his team for their lackluster performances. Will someone rise above and become the Ultimate?

As Chris is getting treated for his post-fight injuries, Brock lashes out at the boys for looking like chicken shit (again). Len storms out, proclaiming that he fought his heart out making a good point that Brock wasn’t even there for his fight (though he did lose). However, Brock couldn’t care less. He’s just being honest — using his own loss to Cain Velasquez as a prime example. He blamed no one but himself. Clay commends Brock for trying to light a fire under them, trying to get them take the damn bull by the horns and just TAKE IT. All the man wants is someone to “Wow” him. Len just feels like he got robbed by the judges — doesn’t he realize that he shouldn’t have left it in their hands? Back at the house, Len is STILL going on and on about Brock’s name-calling, whining that Brock needs to grow up (so says the one who is still whining…).

At the fight announcement JDS picks his own Mick Bowman to take on Team Lesnar’s Clay Harvison. This is a big fight for Team Lesnar as they need it to regain control and for a morale boost.

At training, Junior is getting frustrated with Coach Lew. Lew, brought in for his wrestling, is trying to teach Mick a little of everything…boxing, BJJ, etc. Junior’s like, “Um, hey, this is my team.” There’s a good reason that Junior’s the coach and Lew’s not.

On Clay’s side, he’s not going underestimate Mick’s toughness. He knows he’s a brawler, but he’s not afraid to step in with him and throw down. At training, they work his jabbing and his combos to counter whatever Mick has. As they’re strategizing, Clay looks over and sees Cope staring them down. Immediately he thinks Chris is a narc and discusses with theory with Charlie. Mr. Toughguy then starts ranting about how he’ll drag Chris into the street and kick his ass right there in Vegas and how he’s been known to break the law. Sorry, kid, but chances are if you have to brag about it, you’re so full of it that your eyes are brown.

The show returns showing someone writing in the sand “Chris Cope Double Agent.” The perpetrator isn’t shown, but Chris and friends discover it. Chris denies it and brings it up to everyone ‘round the fire. He puts it out there and wants to know who thinks he’s playing both sides. No one really fesses up, but some admit to their doubts. Chris promises that his word is good and that he’s a man of integrity. The guys claim to believe him and thank him for his honesty.

But no sooner do they “believe” him that they’re back upstairs trashing him. They all think that it must’ve been someone on Team Dos Santos that wrote in the sand, and if that’s the case, Chris must be a double agent. So much for giving him the benefit of the doubt.

Moments later, Chris comes up all smiles and flat out accuses Tony of being the writer. Tony denies it, despite Chris’s claim that #1 — Tony has written in the sand before and #2 — The handwriting matches up. Chris pushes and pushes, causing Tony to take huge offense to being called a liar. The Team starts to wonder if this is Chris’s guilty conscience talking. Chris and Tony eventually kiss and make up and move on.

The sand bit becomes the topic of conversation for Team Dos Santos also. Apparently, it was the handiwork of Mick — not because Chris is feeding them his team’s info, but because Chris is always lurking around them, seemingly trying to collect info not dispense it. Duh…

FIGHT DAY

ROUND 1
Right out of the gate both are swinging big. Harvison is more offensive and lands a couple combos. They start being pickier with their offense and choose what they throw more hesitantly. Harvison lands a solid right and left. Bowman shoots for a takedown, but Harvison reverses it and gets Bowman on his back. From his feet, Harvison lands a couple solid bombs, but Bowman counters with some big up-kicks. Harvison falls onto Bowman, allowing Bowman to grab onto Harvison’s arm looking for an armbar. Harvison wiggles out and they are both up on their feet. Back to standing, they exchange several combos, and Harvison sneaks in a couple big knees. Harvison charges Bowman and pins him against the fence where he alternates between knees and body shots. They separate but Harvison is still on the offensive pelting Bowman with combo after combo. Back against the cage, Harvison retains control but Bowman spins out and lands a nasty elbow to Harvison’s temple. Harvison then spins into control and attempts but misses the very same elbow. In the center, they’re throwing bombs again, and Bowman connects a straight jab that snaps Harvison’s neck back but he takes it. They exchange a few knees, but the round ends with a failed double from Bowman.
(Definitely giving that round to Harvison — he controlled the round, landed more shots and was the aggressor)

ROUND 2
Bowman charges first with a leg kick but doesn’t connect. Harvison retaliates with a jab/kick combo that sends Bowman flying backwards. Harvison charges at him, peppering him with jabs and they clinch. They alternate control but neither does much. Back at center, they go tit for tat — combo for combo, kick for kick, but Harvison lands more shots than Bowman does. Harvison slips as a goes for a takedown, but Bowman doesn’t take advantage. The exchanges continue but both are slowing down. Finally, Bowman lands a leg kick and a jab that surprise Harvison. But Harvison returns the favor. However, Harvison seems to be less offensive than previously. Harvison is backing up more and allowing Bowman to take shots. Bowman looks for the takedown but settles for the clinch. He sneaks in some head shots and some knees as the round ends.
(I would’ve given the round to Bowman, but apparently the judges saw differently).

Winner: Clay Harvison via Decision

Clay was completely dominant in the first round, but a kick that hurt his right hand threw him off in the second round. It was like a switch went off and allowed Mick to take over Round 2.

After the fight, Mick is beside himself with disappointment, no matter how many times Junior tells him to keep his head up.

In Clay’s corner, he’s proud of his win, but the joy is cut short when the gloves come off and he discovers that his pinky is not only broken, but the bone has come through the skin! Off to the hospital he goes to get it reset and casted. Sorry, buddy, you’re out. And despite this ending Clay’s tenure on TUF, Brock is proud. *insert eye roll*

Next week: Injuries plague Brock’s fighters. The conflict between JDS and Lew comes to a head. And we get the last to preliminary fights. Plus, the wildcard is announced.