This episode we see Brit fighter David Faulkner not struggling with training in the usual sense but trying to get over his gum shield phobia. Dave’s problem is a gag reflex from wearing a gum shield. Something you can do without as a mixed martial artist, seeing as it is essential to protect your teeth inside the octagon.
Mean while in Dan Henderson’s American training camp Jason Pierce is suffering from what is now known to be a Staph infection. It is still unclear wether Pierce is going to fight.
Next up Henderson gives his trainees a timeout from the gruelling sparring and strength training as Team USA play the Ultimate Frisbee. It’s a game of Frisbee but with a squad of ultimate fighters it is resembling a game of Rugby on a dusty pitch in Arizona. Despite the morale boost of the team game out in the open Pierce with his ailment is a source of negative energy for the his team mates.
The next fight in the lightweight category is decided between Bournemouth Bulldog gym fighter Jeff Lawson against American Jason Dent. Both guys are technically sound MMA practioners. Lawson is the fighter I have been waiting to see since he impressed me on the first episode plus he is a Bournemouth lad so I’m rooting for him.
Over in Team USA coach Hendo is having problems with Dent who is not open to learning, strange considering this is a once in a life time opportunity for the American mixed martial artist.
Along with being a fantastic grappler and all round exciting fighter Jeff Lawson turns out to be a funny entertaining bloke to watch on TV. This my friends and fellow ultimate fight fanatics is the episode of the pro wrestling match! What a classic moment seeing 3 real fighters Faulkner, Amarasinghe and Lawson donning Lucha Libre style masks acting out WWE wrestling in the TUF 9 house. Not only was it fun to see them vertical suplex each other off the diving board but a great example of Team UK’s bonding. There was me presuming Team USA would get up to tongfoolery of that kind.
Jeff Lawson is fully prepared for the fight ahead of him having recovered from a chest infection earlier in the series. By appearance Lawson does not standout as an obvious tough guy like Brit MMA legend Ian Freeman for instance but watch out for this red devil.
Mean while Dana White questions Jason Pierce if he can fight because a decision needs to be made. Dana is not convinced he really wants it. Could someone else get another crack at it? Who might replace Pierce?
Jeff Lawson’s opponent Jason Dent is sure of himself, expressing confidence in kicking Lawson’s butt.
It’s fight time, Herb Dean is the fight official for this lightweight bout.
Round 1) Lawson is exciting watch, impressing attacking with a Capoirora style kick. Dorset lad Lawson dominates the 1st round on the mat, attempting numerous submissions to tapout Dent. Dent defends himself managing to last the round but it doesn’t look good for the American fighter.
Round 2) Another exciting fast paced round which inluded more aerial assault from Lawson in the form of a flying knee. The problem for Lawson despite the heart he shows he is gassed appearing not to be fully fit to go the distance since his chest infection. Dent on the ground sneaks in an Anaconda choke to take the win by tap out. The chest infection affected Lawson’s cardio but still looked ace despite gassing. If anyone can recommend me a DVD featuring Lawson please let me known.
Dent won but Dana White was not impressed by Dent’s performance. There you have it UK 4-3 USA. We are still ahead but the Yanks are gaining on us.
At the close of the show Dana declares Pierce is not going to fight. The question remains of who will take his place?
Make sure you tune into Virgin 1 every Sunday at 11pm in the UK on Freeview TV, Sky or Virgin Media. Setanta Sports subscribers can catch The Ultimate Fighter second showing every Wednesday. Over in the States the programme is aired on Spike TV a few days earlier.
MMA blog by Dynamite Duane