The Ultimate Fighter Season 10 TUF10 Finale proved to be a lot of fun – people with differing skill sets and nearly everyone at the top of their game.
If you remember Marcus Jones‘ tirade in the previous episode (click here to go to the details), it came as no surprise that Jones was to fight against Matt Mitrione. This bout was Mitrione’s debut in the UFC; Jones had a record of 4 and 2 coming in. Even though Jones was three inches taller, Mitrione had a two inch reach advantage.
Jones was on the attack from the start, grabbing Mitrione for take down after take down. At one point he attempted a guillotine, but Mitrione escaped. Mitrione, in response to the take downs, used the cage to stand up. In a clinch, Mitrione dealt shoulder shots, a high knee and a knee to the gut. The men traded jabs and the occasional knee, but Jones was the aggressor throughout the round with his many take downs.
Joe Rogan talked a bit about Jones’ stand up style, or lack thereof, and how elementary it was. Jones has been doing MMA for under three years, so everything is new. This limited experience with stand up fighting was a crucial aspect as round two began. Jones rushed Mitrione and Mitrione did a straight right to Jones’ face. As Jones was falling, he followed up that shot with another. KO.
Frankie Edgar had the next fight against Matt Veach. Edgar is a freestyler and Veach, a brawler, with comparable records (Edgar 10-1, Veach 11-0). Although they were within a pound of each other, Veach looked much bigger, very muscular.
The bout was indicative of Veach’s strength: he picked Edgar up multiple times and slammed him to the floor. All that brute strength had its toll as Veach would take huge breaths when they were separated. Edgar tried his own take downs, but they were stuffed. Edgar went in for strikes, here and there, but Veach’s were far harder.
Round 2 had Veach trying for a single leg take down which Edgar stuffed. Both men used combination strikes until Edgar clipped Veach, causing Veach to drop to the floor. Edgar jumped on him, did some ground and pound and arear naked. Tap out. Fight of the Night.
The weirdest fight of the night was between Kimbo Slice and Houston Alexander. Alexander is known to be an extremely tough opponent, having decimated Keith Jardine in 48 seconds of round 1. Rogan said that Alexander’s tactic was to attack Slice’s lead leg, the one without the cartilage. In order to do this, Alexander circled the octagon, with Slice in the center, for basically the first round. Nothing happened for almost three minutes, save booing and boredom. Slice eventually moved in closer; Alexander did the occasional leg kick to Slice’s lead leg.
At the 2:10 mark, Slice managed a clinch and both men were striking. Slice connected, but Alexander went back to the leg kicks and circling.
Round 2 had Slice getting in closer and accomplishing a take down and full mount. Alexander stood up, but slipped, enabling Slice to grab him and do a huge, frightening body slam. Slice tried for a choke as well. He had another take down and did some ground and pound. When Alexander turned, Slice had his back and grapevined him, trying another choke. Kimbo Slice has some ground techniques. Nice.
All the while that Slice was trying new techniques (new to him), Alexander did the circling and leg kicks. Almost all the kicks were inside, but an outside leg kick in the third round took Slice’s leg out from under him. When on the ground, Slice was in control. Standing, Alexander did his kicks and Slice would come in to strike. Both men were slow to do anything in this round. Slice won by unanimous decision.
Alexander’s tactics to destroy Slice’s leg worked, but made for a boring fight; however, it was fun to see Slice with his new skill sets.
Mark Bocek fought against Joe Brammer in a lightweight match up. Bocek is a BJJ black belt with a record of 7-2 in the octagon. Most of his wins are by submission. Brammer was 7-0-1 coming in to this fight. He is a jeet kune do guy who favours chokes and unorthodox strikes.
Brammer started the match with two big kicks from the southpaw stance. Bocek almost immediately attempted a take down. When he succeeded, he grapevined Brammer in a body triangle. Brammer got to his feet, but Bocek remained on his back, getting his hooks in. Bocek (while on Brammer’s back, hooks still in, back to the cage) then began a rear naked choke. It didn’t look as though the arm was under the chin, but that Brammer’s head was cranked to the side, the jaw was trapped and the Bocek’s arm tightly around. Tap out. Submission of the Night.
Matt Hammill‘s fight against Jon Jones promised good things: both were collegiate wrestlers (with Hammill on the Olympic team, I believe). Jones came in undefeated with an astounding 8 1/2 inch reach advantage. He also has fantastic spinning back fists and kicks.
Jones began with high head kicks; Hammill answered with low kicks and jabs. Hammill tried a take down, but Jones threw Hammill with an o soto gari, I think. He then had full mount and did some vicious ground and pound, striking from about 18 inches to Hammill’s face. Hammill did not attempt to lift his hips or shrimp out. His nose had a huge gash and blood was flowing into his eyes. As Jones continued the G and P, the referee jumped in to stop him – he had done a downward elbow strike to the face, which in UFC rules is illegal. One point was deducted and then the fight was deemed over as Hammill could not continue. Due to the illegal strike, Jones lost the match due to disqualification. To top it off, Hammill dislocated a shoulder during an exchange.
McSweeney and Schoonover, from The Ultimate Fighter Season 10 TUF10, had the next match. McSweeney showed far more abilities than in his fights during The Ultimate Fighter. He tried a rear naked choke when in the grapevine position, ground and pound during one of their sessions on the floor, a huge slam for a take down and strong kicks and knees from standing. Schoonover is talented, but this was not to be his night. Although Schoonover countered with strikes, knees and kicks, rolled McSweeney, moved constantly when on the ground, McSweeney ended the match by a flying knee, head kick, right hand and knee to the face. Schoonover dropped. TKO referee stoppage.
The semifinalists of The Ultimate Fighter Season 10 TUF10, Brendan Schaub and Roy Nelson, had their final bout. Schaub was the taller, by four inches. He had won all his previous matches by knock out. His background is tae kwon do, jiu jitsu and boxing, having been a Golder Gloves champion. Nelson is a black belt in jiu jitsu and the IFL heavyweight champion. His specialty is ground and pound.
The first round began with Nelson attempting a take down. Schaub answered with combos. Nelson did a little ankle throw when in the clinch and ended in Schaub’s half guard. He then tried an ude garami without success.
After Schaub got up, he throw a number of combinations, most connecting. Nelson countered and then threw an overhand right to Schaub’s left temple. Knock out. Knock out of the Night.
Nelson went into The Ultimate Fighter boasting of his abilities, although most of these guys do that. He bragged to White but White was “not impressed” until the semi final bout. Considering that Nelson is so experienced a fighter, despite his girth and his looking out of shape, it isn’t a surprise that he won overall.
December 7, 2009