Read on for a recap of the seventh episode of The Ultimate Fighter Brasil..
Since the start of the first season of The Ultimate Fighter Brasil, fight selection happened during the episode aired. But with the narrowing of the featherweight division, the last fight of the quarterfinals was determined on the previous episode, leaving fans to speculate all week not just about what would happen in the fight between Rony Jason and Anistávio Gasparzinho, but to discuss the rumors that the confrontation caused.
The last featherweight fight of the quarterfinals matches two guys that are friends outside the house, but that in TUF Brasil represent rival teams. This bout divides opinions inside and outside the house. Through the UFC's social media, many said that the choice is part of being a professional and earning a place in the world renowned Octagon, but at the same time, fans did not like the choice of a match between friends.
In the house, the two fighters in the most talked about fight of the season thus far have a confusion of feelings. The discontent is visible, but it is a mission that must be fulfilled in search of the goal that each one of them had from the moment they signed up for the reality show.
In a private conversation, Wagner Galeto and Jason (Team Wanderlei) talk about Vitor's decision and wonder if Gasparzinho has been scheming with the coach of his team, and also show concern about Jason's cardio. From the green team, Godofredo Pepey talks with Gasparzinho about what he heard from Jason about his performance in the elimination fight. The fighter in the last featherweight quarterfinal claims that Jason has already shown himself to be mentally shaken, and Sergio Moraes is aware of the cardio problem that Jason has.
After the official weigh-in for the fight, Team Wanderlei took the free time to get in their share of teasing, using a Vitor Belfort photo in the training center to glue on a mustache, tie, hat, scar and a tattoo on the belly button. This is common on TUF seasons outside Brazil, but had not happened yet on the Brazilian version. The leader of Team Vítor took the joke well, while some of his men didn't take so kindly to it.
Vítor came up with a clever chat to motivate his athletes, saying that Dana White called him, mentioning that he could replace some of his athletes, those who were less motivated. The idea worked as a motivator, despite the distrust of some whether it was true or not.
Wanderlei and Rafael Cordeiro tried to motivate their athletes, and Vina condemned the method used by the coaches, saying they put everything on the athletes’ shoulders. Jason says that is the athlete's fault, as he’s the one who must understand that it's all or nothing.
The visit of former light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida to the locker room before the fight between Jason x Gasparzinho gave a final motivation to the fighters. The statements of both guys are based on workouts they had in the past, but as the saying goes, "training is training, a fight is a fight.”
Once the fight began, the battle only heated up after a short interruption to check on Gasparzinho, who suffered an accidental finger in the eye. Starting again, Jason attempted a front kick, which was defended by Gasparzinho, who came back with a right hand that made Jason go back and get trapped against the fence. Gasparzinho took advantage of the moment and went in with a flying knee, and even though it wasn’t perfect, it knocked Jason off balance. On the ground, Gasparzinho entered Jason's guard and quickly went for the armlock. The submission was very tight and it was only a matter of seconds before Mario Yamasaki interrupted the fight immediately, giving Team Wanderlei their first win in the house.
If all the controversy did not appear during the seconds that the fight lasted, in the post-fight, it came in full force. Wanderlei snapped at Vitor about choosing a match between two friends. The atmosphere was heavy, with a lot being said by the former PRIDE middleweight champion, who has a strong opinion about Vitor.
“[He] doesn't know what a partner is, he has not one friend on earth.”
Vítor fired back, "Sportsmanship. This is a sport. He won [Jason], congratulations.”
Opinions are divided at this time and different points of view are created that will still create much controversy.
With the first victory of Team Wanderlei, the game changes as the choice of the next middleweight fight (Thiago Bodão, Sergio Moraes, Delson Pé de Chumbo and Francisco Massaranduba) will be made by Silva.