Read on to find out who won the final TUF Brazil 3 quarterfinal heavyweight bout!
After losing the first few fights of the season, the mood on Team Sonnen has drastically changed. They’ve taken the last three fights and Pezao, (their “big gun” according to Chael Sonnen) still hasn’t fought yet. He’s set to face Jollyson in the final heavyweight fight of the first round. Wanderlei realizes that his fighter has the deck stacked against him, but believes that Jollyson has all the necessary skills to win.
After watching each team’s preparations during fight week, we learn more about this week’s combatants. Jollyson describes himself as a “peaceful kid.” He had a nice childhood, and talks about how people he knows are surprised that he became a professional fighter. He found MMA because he enjoyed competing, and he had a natural talent for it. As for the game plan,
Wanderlei wants Jollyson to use a lot of kicks. He believes that his fighter has the cardio advantage, and wants him to push the pace. Unlike Jollyson, Pezao did not have such a peaceful upbringing. He admits that he was “lost” as a youth and became heavily involved in drugs. Martial arts were a way for him to find himself and do something productive. He also plans to push the pace and continually move forward during the fight. Wary of Jollyson’s Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt, the last thing he wants to do is bring this fight to the ground. With two heavyweights planning on running at each other, the chances for this one going the distance are slim.
Weigh-ins go without incident, and Warlley gives high praise for his teammate. He calls Pezao “the most dangerous heavyweight here,” and gives Jollyson next to no chance of winning. He says that the Team Silva fighter is one dimensional and that he’ll probably get his head taken off by one of Pezao’s high kicks. We’ll see if that talk is misplaced because it’s fight time!
The two touch gloves and Pezao kicks immediately. Jollyson doesn’t lose his head, but he does take another clean head kick. This gives him a sense of urgency as he throws a big overhand punch and moves in for the takedown. He pushes his opponent against the fence and the two fight for position. They trade knees, reverse position and grind on each other for the advantage. After stalling, the two break apart and resume striking. After eating a stiff jab, Jollyson jumps in for a takedown. As he leads in, Pezao grabs a guillotine and jumps up trying to finish. His grip slips, though, and Jollyson starts kicking the downed opponent from open guard. Jollyson then moves into Pezao’s closed guard, but can’t hold the big man down. The two are back on their feet and Pezao reaches for another guillotine. It’s not in tight so he releases, punches and slams Jollyson to the ground.
Pezao attacks from top position and the ref stops the fight. He calls in the doctor and we hear Jollyson accuse Pezao of biting his finger. He asks for a disqualification, but the ref rules the event accidental because Jollyson stuck his fingers into Pezao’s mouth during a scramble.
They restart and soon clinch up. Pezao gets a waistlock, and goes for a lateral drop. He can’t finish it, but fails and winds up with Jollyson on top of him. The BJJ black belt has mount, but only 15 seconds to work. Pezao holds on tight and the round expires before Jollyson can work a submission.
Jollyson kicks and forces the clinch again. Pezao slowly works for the underhooks, and finally breaks free. Jollyson continues to charge forward, and tries for another trip takedown. Pezao counters, dumps Jollyson on the mat and works from half guard. He’s unable to advance, backs out and has the ref stand them up. Jollyson is visibly fatigued and starts throwing wild haymakers. One of these punches throws him off balance; Pezao capitalizes and puts him on his back. The Team Sonnen “big gun” then unleashes some brutal ground and pound. Jollyson doesn’t appear to have any answers, and just holds on tight as the round ends.
The judges give the unanimous decision to Pezao. Wanderlei gives the opposing team credit. Their strategy centered around putting Pezao on the ground, but his takedown defense was the deciding factor. A completely unsurprised Chael Sonnen continues his lofty praise for his big gun. “There are martial artists, and there are fighters. [Pezao] is a fighter.
With that win, Pezao evens up the fight records to 4-4 for the opposing teams. We then move directly into the semifinal deliberations. Dana White brings each semifinalist into the office and teleconferences with them and the two coaches. Amazingly, the two coaches actually agree on all the matchups. Is reconciliation close? Probably not, but here are the semifinal matches:
Pezao vs. Cara de Sapato
Vitor vs. Rick Monstro
Wagnao vs. Warlley
Demente vs. Lyoto
Looks like we’ll keep the Team Sonnen vs. Team Wanderlei motif going into the semis! We wrap up with a sneak peek into next week’s episode. Can Wagnao overcome Warlley’s power? Do Cara de Sapato’s jokes come back to haunt him against Pezao? Will Chael Sonnen dance again? Find out this and more next week on The Ultimate Fighter Brazil!