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The Ultimate Fighter: Season 12 Episode 4: “Love to Hate”
Previously on TUF, Alex Caceres scores the first victory of the season, but let it go to his head. Team Koscheck pulls the first prank of the season, but fails to get a rise out of GSP. Mike Tyson visits to see Aaron Wilkinson get submitted by Michael Johnson. Who will be the next in line?
Johnson and Wilkinson was a sick fight. Aaron was grossly underestimated, and definitely had Michael up against the ropes at times. But the third round found a new Mike who came out like a shotgun for the win. Back in the locker room, GSP comments that if all the fights go this way, they’re gonna give him a heart attack! Tyson is also with them in the locker room, playing guru. “Success breeds confidence.” The more they win, the more confident they will be. However, they also need to watch how they conduct themselves both in and out of the ring (oh, the irony!).
At Koscheck’s training camp, Kos is definitely feeling the heat of a 0-2 start. He deems that they must get busy living or get busy dying. Well, they have some business to catch up on. Sevak and his teammates seem to be pumped up and motivated to overcome their losses. Kos promises them that they harder they work now, the bigger the payoff (hmmm…I think I need to borrow that line).
Back at the house, several guys are having a bitch-session about the disrespect shown by Alex during Mike and Aaron’s fight (his yelling, “F**k him up” and whatnot). Alex overhears this and comes over to defend himself. First it starts out as a lot of yelling between Alex and Jeff, but then Sevak gets heated to the point where he’s out of his seat and ready to go toe-to-toe with him. Thankfully, Nam grabs Sevak by the waist and gets him into the house. After the chaos, Alex makes light of the whole situation, acting like he can do no wrong.
GSP and Kos are at the gym, and Kos tries to get under GSP’s skin…unsuccessfully…again.
Up 2 to nothing on Kos, GSP makes the next fight pick, which will be Kyle Watson vs. Andrew Main. Dana thinks this will be interesting, as they are both Jiu Jitsu guys. This’ll be the oldest guy in the house versus the youngest guy in the house. Watson has the experience, while Main has the youth. Kos isn’t looking past Watson, but he sees a team win.
Watson spars with GSP, discussing his approach. He is very analytical, playing out scenarios and strategies. According to Coach Danaher, this could go a number of ways — played out on the ground, or even a win standing up. Watson agrees, asserting that he doesn’t see Main submitting him.
Once again, Kos tries to push GSP’s buttons by coming in wearing GSP-style Speedos. He gets nothin’ out of him. When will Kos just realize that he won’t win this, and give up?
At training, Kos is pumped for this fight. Coach Camarillo watches some video of Watson to assess him, finding that he is slow, methodical and technical. Main works with Teddy Lucio to work on his weakness — striking. His game plan is to use his speed and power to his advantage to get Watson down. Each team has their guy winning…duh.
Main talks about how important it is for them to get control — going down 0-3 would put them in a serious hole. They need the control to start picking more advantageous fights. Kos sits them down for a pep talk, and gets Main alone to make sure he understands the gravity. “Go out there and lay it on the alone. Believe in yourself.” Game plan? Get on top. Nice and simple.
Danaher points out that this is the first fight where psychological pressure may come into play. Main has the pressure of getting a much-needed win for Team Koscheck. As the oldest, Watson is the unofficial team captain, and therefore has more to prove. It will all come down to how they each handle the stress of it all. To help overcome this, GSP has Watson go through “dress rehearsals,” going through the motions of entering the ring, hearing instructions, etc. to get him prepared for those very intense moments. Definitely an interesting tactic.
(Gotta pull for my Jersey boy in this one! Thankfully Main doesn’t look like he belongs on Jersey Shore!)
They both feel each other out initially, but keep it standing with a few exchanges. Main seems to get the better of the shots. Finally, one of the exchanges ends up in the clinch with Watson in control. It’s not long before Main reverses it and tries to take Watson down. He starts out looking for a choke. As Watson tries to work a better position, Main swings around jumping on his back. While still standing, Main is on Watson’s back facing and leaning on the cage. Main rains down several punches, while also looking for the choke. Watson keeps his chin down, not allowing his hooks under. Main starts to slide off Watson’s back, and as they fall, Main gets a hold of an arm. In a tough position, Watson tries to get out of the near armbar and does. Main is on his back with Watson hovering above with the occasional downward jab. Finally, Watson is on top of Main nearly in full guard. He tries to go for side control, but Main fends him off pretty well. Watson gets in a few nice elbows, alternating some hammers. The round ends with Watson finally getting side control.
Main strikes first with a body kick, but both are tentative. Finally Main gets aggressive and is chasing Watson around the ring and clipping him a few times. Watson counters by taking Main down. However, all he does is lay on him. Main starts to look for a triangle, but Watson uses this to get side control. Main rolls over and tries to stand, but Watson keeps him down and has half-mount. Watson is pretty much doing zero with his position. He finally sets up and gets in a nice head shot. Main tries to up-kick and is warned. Main rolls, giving up his back. Watson mounts his back, getting his legs wrapped well, but unable to get the underhooks in. He lands several unanswered punches, and manages to wedge the forearm under. He gets the hooks in tight and squeezes. Soon enough, Main is out.
Winner: Kyle Watson via Submission (Rear Naked Choke)
Team Koscheck is now down 0-3 and Kos is far from happy. GSP was happy to see that Watson could come back from being in such a tough spot, though Watson felt that it was not his best performance.
Main is disappointed that he didn’t completely follow the game plan; Kos is heartbroken, but realizes that getting mad will solve nothing.
Next week: A careless prank by Alex backfires. Team GSP gets schooled by a guest coach, while Jon Fitch helps out Team Koscheck. Chuck Liddell also visits his buddy Kos, ending with another lightweight clash.