With the weird, sad turn of events for Tito Ortiz in the last few days, let's focus on the halcyon days of Ortiz's coaching stint on "The Ultimate Fighter." Last week, Team Liddell's Richie Attonito won but hurt his hand, while house rabble-rouser Jamie Yager scored win one for Team Punishment.
As the show begins, a few of the fighters sit around and discuss which fighters will get not only the wild card spot, but also the spot vacated by Attonito and his hurt hand. The wild card will go to the fighter who lost in the first round but deserves a second chance. Hammortree thinks he is the best candidate for the spot.
With Yager's win, the matchmaking is in Tito Ortiz's hands. He picks Kris McCray to face off with Team Liddell's Josh Bryant.
Liddell notices that Bryant is a jolly, friendly guy. He doesn't even get crabby when cutting weight, which is unheard of. McCray says that he is a mixture of many background, and is Austrian, black and Mexican but speaks German.
Clayton McKinney, who we haven't heard from since he hurt his shoulder in the preliminary fights, is back at the house after getting that shoulder surgically repaired.
Yager is likely to stir up problems again, saying that though Bryant is his teammate, McCray is "his boy." Liddell will have to miss this fight, as he did last week, because of a previous engagement, and seems genuinely upset about it. On the flip side of coach, Ortiz apologized to McKinney, acknowledging that he didn't believe that McKinney was really injured.
Josh Bryant (Team Liddell) vs. Kris McCray (Team Punishment)
Round One: McCray grabs Bryant early for a clinch, landing shots all the while. After Bryant breaks free, McCray completes a head kick and a few punches before getting a takedown. McCray takes Bryant's back, but Bryant posts up and shakes McCray off to bring the fight back to the fighters' feet. McCray again goes to the clinch, then takes Bryant down with an awkward throw. The fighters return to standup, and then Bryant takes control with a takedown. He attempts to sink in a rear naked choke, but McCray turns into it and gets out. The round ends with the fighters on the feet.
Round Two: Hackleman, standing in as the coach of Team Liddell, tells Bryant to "Let 'em fly!" Bryant takes a second to start following those directions, absorbing leg kicks before finally unleashing a few punches on McCray. Bryant shoots in for a takedown, taking a knee to the body along the way. The fighters muscle around on the ground for a bit before getting back to their feet and Bryant lands a series of punches. Bryant then slams McCray to the ground, but McCray ends up on top and in Bryant's guard.
As the first two rounds were so tight, the fight was tied up a round apiece meaning that they had to fight one more round to decide the bout.
Round Three: Bryant shoots in on a single leg and holds McCray against the cage for roughly 17 years. (Or about a minute and a half, but it felt like forever.) The two of them go to the ground, but then are back up on their feet and pushing against the cage in pursuit of a takedown in no time. Referee Herb Dean finally breaks them up, and as Hackleman loses his voice yelling, "LET 'EM GO!" Bryant lands a few punches before getting a takedown. He throws elbows from side guard then takes McCray's back for a rear naked choke as the time runs out.
With that strong ending, Bryant wins and Team Liddell takes back the choice in the next fights. Ortiz says that Liddell has a rabbit foot up his [expletive], not really seeing his own role in his team's demise.