CAUTION: SPOILERS INCLUDED – This week, it's the Wild Card fight on The
Ultimate Fighter: Team Lesnar vs. Team dos Santos.
More blogs by TUF cast:
Tony Ferguson for SBNation
Ramsey Nijem for MMAFighting
Charles Rader for Around the Octagon
Clay Harvison for USA Today
Javier Torres for MMA Valor
Len Bentley for MMA DieHards
Ryan McGillivray for Top MMA News
Shamar Bailey for Heavy
Zach Davis for MMA Weekly
Chris Cope for MMA Junkie
Chuck O’Neil for Bleacher Report
Lew Polley for MMA Junkie
CAUTION: SPOILERS INCLUDED – Chuck O’Neil and Javier Torres have received a second chance to stay in the competition as Wild Card picks on The Ultimate Fighter: Team Lesnar vs. Team dos Santos, and both are fired up for the opportunity.
Also fired up is the one fighter many considered to be the favorite for one of the two Wild Card slots, Team Lesnar’s Len Bentley. Disappointed by being eliminated, he asks UFC President Dana White to fight the man who decisioned him, Ryan McGillivray on the season finale card if the Team dos Santos member doesn’t make it to the finals.
“Why didn’t you tell me this before we picked the Wild Card,” asks White. “Nobody felt like you wanted this thing bad enough. If you grabbed me two hours ago, we wouldn’t even be having this conversation.”
Even back at the house, Bentley is inconsolable when it comes to the Wild Card picks, and he’s getting on his housemates’ nerves. So when McGillivray tells Bentley that he heard coach Brock Lesnar questioned whether his knee would be ready for another fight, it just adds fuel to the fire. So at the next practice, Bentley confronts Lesnar, and the former heavyweight champion points to the knee as the main reason for him not being picked, which seems to finally calm things down.
And there is no place for drama on the football field at Bishop Gorman High School, where Lesnar and opposing coach Junior dos Santos meet for this season’s Coaches Challenge. After trying out for the Minnesota Vikings, you would assume that Lesnar has the immediate edge, but dos Santos is an athlete and can never be counted out.
The competition includes high knee and side step drills, the pushing of a blocking sled 15 yards, a field goal kick, a pass through an Octagon-shaped target, and then a catch of a pass followed by a 100 yard run. The first coach to make it back to the end zone wins $10,000, and each member of his team wins $1,500.
The two are neck and neck throughout the course until they hit the field goal portion, where dos Santos takes the lead after a couple misses. It’s all the advantage he needs as he pulls away to beat Lesnar to the end zone and win the challenge.
“I think we both sucked,” smiled Lesnar. “He just got luckier than I did.”
Dos Santos was a gracious winner, giving some of his winnings to members of Team Lesnar, including the coaching staff.
“Everybody got paid, except for Brock,” laughed dos Santos. “He doesn’t deserve it, he lost.”
Lesnar has his chance to get even in more than more ways than one on fight night though, as a win by O’Neil over Torres will not only move his fighter to the second round, it will tie the final first round score between the teams at four.
And O’Neil delivers, parlaying a solid first round effort into a finish in round two, as he gets Torres to the mat and sinks in a fight-ending D’Arce choke.
“Chuck executed the things that we wanted him to do, and he did a phenomenal job,” said Lesnar.
The win finishes up the first round, and the quarterfinal matchups are as follows:
Clay Harvison vs. Ramsey Nijem
Chris Cope vs. Shamar Bailey
Chuck O’Neil vs. Zachary Davis
Tony Ferguson vs. Ryan McGillivray
Here’s how the teams look heading into the quarterfinals:
Len Bentley – Eliminated on episode three by Ryan McGillivray
Charles Rader – Eliminated on episode four by Ramsey Nijem
Tony Ferguson 1-0
Clay Harvison 1-0
Chuck O’Neil – 1-1 Eliminated on episode six by Zachary Davis. Returned for Wild Card bout and re-entered the competition
Chris Cope 1-0
Nordin Asrih – Eliminated on episode one by Shamar Bailey
Team dos Santos
Shamar Bailey 1-0
Ryan McGillivray 1-0
Javier Torres – Eliminated on episode two by Chris Cope. Returned for Wild Card bout and was eliminated by Chuck O’Neil
Ramsey Nijem 1-0
Zachary Davis 1-0
Mick Bowman – Eliminated on episode five by Clay Harvison
Justin Edwards – Eliminated on episode six by Tony Ferguson
For weekly recaps of The Ultimate Fighter, as well as fighter profiles, stay tuned to UFC.com.