Eric Spicely is a contestant on Season 23 of The Ultimate Fighter: Team Joanna vs Team Claudia. He will be offering episode previews and insights from his time on the show throughout the season.
So finally it's time for the last male light heavyweight fight. We’re very confident coming into this fight with Abdel versus Josh. Abdel’s record may only be 3-0 but he has a wealth of experience. I remember my first time sparring him I thought to myself, 'Who the hell is this guy.’ His low kicks were brutal, his hands were crisp. Very good wrestling and Jiu-jitsu.
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Andrew, who has gone to Tristar to train before, also was familiar with Abdel and his skills. So just like me I think Joanna and the rest of the red team is underestimating Abdel. He’s our ace in the hole. We are very confident he’s going to extend our win streak. Now, that’s not to discredit Josh, Josh is a heavy-handed well-skilled fighter. He’s formerly competed at heavyweight and is on a seven-fight win streak (eight if you include the fight to get in the house). He previously competed on Season 19 of The Ultimate Fighter before blowing his knee out. He was actually winning his fight to get in the house so Josh is coming in with a lot to prove. Josh is there No. 1 pick, not that I buy into all that stuff.
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It’s going to be interesting to see how Abdel fights coming back after visiting home and dealing with his marital problems. I am interested in seeing where his mind is at. He assures everyone that he’s ready and focused. If Abdel fights to his full potential I don’t see anyone beating him. Josh on the other hand is nothing but focused. He’s doing this for his family, for his boys at home. Josh has been on this grind a long time and that is something I really respect. He’s been at the same job for 10-plus years, lives in an area without a major gym/team and he’s making it work - all while taking care of his family.
It’s hard to pick a favorite in this fight. Obviously Abdel is my teammate, roommate and now close friend, so I’m obviously behind him with 100 percent support. But I think this has potential to be the fight of the season. Two tough guys going to stand and bang in the middle of the octagon. I’m looking forward to this fight.