The Ultimate Fighter 8: Episode 4 Recap

Like every week, we start out with scenes from last week’s episode: the joys of a drunken Junie Browning picking a fight with Team Nogueira, interspersed with shots of last week’s fight where Bader finished off Lawlor with a first round knockout.

At the house, all of the guys are huddled in the living room watching UFC 84 — Penn v. Sherk. Virtually silently, they watch in awe, knowing that could be them someday. Unfortunately, the silence is broken when Junie and Shane decide to start drinking (Junie does so despite knowing that he has to watch himself and not makes mistakes). Even Krzysztof notices Junie and Shane hitting the wine bottle, and hard, but is most concerned when they start drinking tequila. Suddenly, the two become best friends and begin riling up the red team. Junie starts throwing peanuts at the other guys, and finally Kyle throws them back at Junie. This prompts Junie to throw wine on him, and then throw his glass at him, which breaks and cuts Kyle’s arm. To Eliot, this is the breaking point: Junie is out of control and he’s gonna hurt one of them. Even Junie realizes that he may have gone too far because he threw the glass at Kyle (at least in hindsight). But at present time, Junie is running is mouth again and Kyle jokes “You’re gonna f**k all of us?” Junie stands, and not learning his lesson, gets up in Kyle’s face.

However, Shane is no better. He’s stripping off his shirt to fight and running his mouth (though unintelligibly). He even pushes Roli off his chair. The smart, silent Roli won’t fight back, so everyone else has to hold Shane back. Not giving up on fighting, Shane gets in on Efrain. But Efrain laughs it off, so it pushes Shane’s buttons even more! Shane pushes up on him, and really gets in his face, but thankfully he just smiles. Bader (and even Junie) gets in between them. With hope that the drama is over, Junie and Shane go downstairs….where they continue to drink. Next thing we know, they’re outside breaking some stuff and throwing others in the pool. When they hear the commotion, the rest of the guys come out onto the balcony and see all this. They try desperately to get them to stop, at which point Junie picks up a bottle. This is what gets Krzysztof worried as he’s crossed a line. Junie puts his hands on Krzysztof and Krzysztof is about to snap…but…then they break to commercial.

When we come back, Junie pushes Krzysztof, and says he doesn’t care what happens because he’s gonna get thrown off anyway. He then refutes it all by claiming that all the 205’ers are pushing the lightweights around and acting like bullies. For no apparent reason, Junie then decides to jump in the pool. While he’s swimming, Krzysztof gets the bright idea of putting Junie’s clothes in the pool. When he notices his drenched clothes, Junie flips out, again. Krzysztof very calmly admits to it, claiming he did it to teach Junie a lesson. In response, Junie pushes him…twice. Bader struggles to hold Junie back as he unleashes his series of expletives on Krzysztof. When Junie calls them all a bunch of bitches, Krzysztof counters that Junie is the true bitch because he can dish it out but he can’t take. During this tete a tete, Bader decides to toss his clothes back in the pool. No surprise, Junie does not react well. He goes to throw Bader in the pool, but goes in himself trying to pull Bader in with him. Bader ends up half in the pool, and they ALL struggle to get Junie out. But he comes out swinging, kicking someone down in the process. When he’s finally out, he swings at Bader, but Bader wisely won’t fight back.

When Junie finally gets calm, he admits he has a bad temper and that he doesn’t think about consequences. And I suppose upon the realization of his behavior, he starts crying and several guys get him to go back in the house and to bed. No one knows what lies ahead….

The sun rises on the next day, and Junie pretty much keeps himself isolated from the rest of the guys. Junie tries rationalizing, by thinking that he thought he had a chance of winning the whole thing and maybe that’s why he was drinking. But he admits that maybe he was destined for failure anyway, and so maybe this sped it up.

As he is pondering all of this, Dana walks in.

Dana acknowledges that Junie is extremely talented but has a chip on his shoulder and is a punk. All the other guys file into the house, kind of expecting Junie and Shane to go home. But at this point, Dana doesn’t know what he’s going to do.

With a barely-there voice, Dana’s first words are, “Junie, what the f**k is wrong with you?” After watching the tape, he is in just complete awe of both Junie and Shane. Dana asks if maybe Junie has a drinking problem, to which Junie replies, “Yes.” Dana explains that he gives them alcohol because they’re grown men, so they can have a couple drinks and relax. Based on their actions, Dana then calls Junie and Shane a drunken jackass and a drunken retard, respectively, and questions their desire to be in the house and fight. He can’t understand how they all watched previous seasons, how guys acted like idiots, and now they’re the idiots. By some small miracle, Dana is willing to give them a second chance. A very thankful Junie gives a very tearful apology and it seems like he’s learned his lesson.

“Rules were not meant to be broken, especially in the UFC. I just hope they don’t make a jackass of me,” says Dana.

Later the same day, we are back at the gym where Nog picks the next fight: Efrain Escudero and Shane Nelson. Neither seems to be too afraid of the other, but look forward to finishing what was started at the house.

At Team Nog’s training session, Efrain says that he came in undefeated and plans to leave undefeated. Of his student, Nog says he has the best guillotine in the house with many dangerous subs: Shane shouldn’t underestimate his Jiu Jitsu.

Back at the house, big-mouth Junie predicts that it’ll be Team Mir versus each other in the finals (telling this to Efrain); thereby implying that Shane is going to beat him. A sober Junie then decides to challenge Efrain to submit him right then and there. In questioning Efrain’s capabilities, Junie says “It’s not the ultimate wrestler” and that his “bitch ass” couldn’t take him down. Efrain…well, he just smiles.

While at the gym for Team Mir’s Training Session, Mir offers up that he is happy with the matchup. He likes Shane’s standup and admits that Efrain’s ground game is probably better, but thinks Shane will be fine. Shane is confident that he can submit him a hundred different ways, while Mir thinks Efrain will have to worry about being submitted OR being knocked out.

FIGHT DAY

More trash talking back and forth from both guys. Shane promises that the only way Efrain will win is if he lays on him for 10 minutes and it goes to decision; Shane will not be submitted or knocked out. Efrain, on the other hand, says Shane will roll over and he’ll choke him.

**Note: Time check: 10:33!!! GRR!! I hope this is an indicator of Junie-drama and not the length of the fight! **

Lightweights
Efrain Escudero vs. Shane Nelson

Round 1:
As soon as they touch gloves both look anxious. They do A LOT of dancing and feeling each other out. Literally, 30 seconds go by and not a single shot taken by either. Finally, Nelson lands a good kick, jab combo but Escudero blocks well. Escudero goes for a stomp. Both are being very choosy in their shots. Escudero circles around a lot. A BIG SWING and miss from Nelson and they clinch. While in the clinch, Escudero tries to drive him down but is unsuccessful. Instead we get a great kick from Nelson. A good kick in return from Escudero, but he looks scared. A combo from Nelson and they clinch. They swap body shots and knees. Escudero tries to get Nelson down, and as Nelson is struggling Escudero gets in a good knee. They clinch with Escudero’s back against the fence. Escudero goes for another takedown, but can’t get it. He is in control on the fence, but neither do anything so ref restarts them. Some good exchanges, a clinch, and Escudero finally gets Nelson on his back and has side control. Keeping his elbow dug into Nelson’s face, he’s trying to change position. He begins punching his head. Nelson tries to roll, and Escudero ends up in a half mount. Escudero keeps up with body shots and elbows. Escudero ends up on his feet and the round ends with Nelson on his back, kicking to keep him away.

Round 2:
Both come out swinging and we immediately see a good exchange. Nelson goes for the take down this time, but with his head at his waist, Escudero gets some good head shots in. They clinch and Escudero SLAMS Nelson down. Escudero is in Nelson’s guard, but not doing much. Nelson throws some elbows to the head. Finally Escudero gets in some head shots. This is about all that is going on, so they get warned for inaction. WEAK WEAK punches from both come with another call for action. Nelson keeps trying to pull his legs up for a triangle. Both end up on their feet. Escudero shoots and slowly works Nelson to the ground against the cage. They tumble a bit and Nelson ends up with Escudero’s leg. He tries for a heel hook, but Escudero rolls and is on his back. Nelson is in his guard and is landing good body shots. Escudero baits Nelson into going for his leg, which he then manages to get around Nelson’s head. Escudero rolls over and gets Nelson into a triangle, virtually sitting on his head, and with little time left, Nelson taps.

Winner: Efrain Escudero via triangle submission

Post-fight, everyone has a lot to say. Dana was impressed that both were landing shots and going for subs in a very active first round. A disappointed Mir says that Shane wasn’t doing enough. Nog, however, was happy with Escudero’s ground work.

But who has the most to say? Guess! Junie starts running his mouth about “boring ass wrestlers” and how the UFC doesn’t need another one. Refusing to be baited, Efrain just smiles. Not one to stray out of character, Junie takes offense and opts to jump into the cage and go after Efrain. Will he ever learn?

Does the drama ever end? I sure hope not! In the preview for the next episode, Junie’s next tirade is played out. Will this one finally get him sent home? Even Mir is pissed as it’s making him look bad! Also, the very privileged fighters get time to train the arguably the best P4P fighter in the world, Anderson Silva. All this leading up to the next Light Heavyweight bout. I’m looking more and more forward to this show every week…