May 28, 2009
Looking back at last week's show, Jason Pierce was taken out of the running for a fight because
he was not really showing a desire to fight of an injury. David Faulkner, ostensibly Pierce's opponent, had trouble keeping his mouthpiece -- or as the Brits said, gumshield -- in his mouth because of a gagging reflex. Our own Jason Dent won his fight. This week, Dana White will have to decide which fighter will take the place of Pierce.
Dan Henderson, coach of Team USA, doesn't know if Frank Lester or Mark Miller will be chosen to take Pierce's place. They both have injuries, but nothing that will prevent them from fighting. Miller said that his broken nose won't keep him from fighting since, "It's just a nose. I'm not going to get any prettier." Lester, who is missing a few teeth, wants to fight as well. After all, Hendo fights without teeth all the time.
Santino DeFranco -- who has become the de facto narrator for the show -- questions Pierce on why Dana won't let him fight. DeFranco says that the house if becoming Lord of the Flies, and Pierce is Piggy, about to get the knife. Lester thinks that if he is chosen to take the other fight, he will win the whole show. Miller is concerned about his conditioning, but wants the fight.
Unfortunately for Miller, his conditioning won't be a problem, as he wasn't medically cleared to fight due to his broken nose. The bout with Faulkner is given to Lester. Dana says that he liked that Lester didn't really care if he had all of his teeth or not, because that's the way a fighter thinks.
Lester's last fight was just a few days before, so he and his coaches are concerned that he might not be ready. Hendo says that he is worried about Frank's face and being able to step up and take the fight.
Battle Royale over training time
Hendo and his team discuss training hours. They had been given the early training times at the gym, and though given the option, hadn't switched to a later time. This week, they decided they were sick of getting up early, and they wanted the later time. When Henderson told Team UK's coach, Michael Bisping, of this decision, Bisping balked. "Ya can't do that, Dan!" (said in your best British accent.) Faceoff!
Bisping: "I'm not going to switch just because two-time PRIDE champion Dan Henderson said we have to swtich."
Henderson: "I didn't realize it was going to be that big of an issue. Bisping was just a little bitch about it."
Bisping: "I've spoken with me associates, and we're not going to switch."
Henderson: "My understanding was that we had the option to switch, and we are exercising that option."
From there, it devolved into this. Damarques Johnson runs his mouth some and calls for the two teams to square off, Gangs of New York-style. Bisping says that in the spirit of the show, they should just fight off for it. "What, do you not believe in your fighter?" Bisping asks. He then yells, "Oh really?" when Henderson pauses.
As the teams break to do the fight announcement, Bisping squirts a water bottle into Johnson's face. Johnson then takes his hat and throws it at Bisping, and asks what that was for. Bisping turns around immediately and says that it was for a racist comment he made the other day. At the tennis match, Dollar called Bisping whiter than a band-aid, and Bisping thought it was Johnson. Bisping then tries to apologize to Johnson, who walks away and says, "I need a minute." Goodness, he is a drama queen. Johnson says that he would fight Bisping in a parking lot, and Henderson points out that Bisping throws tantrums when things don't go his way. Indeed.
After all that, Bisping's training time was switched to the morning time by the powers that be, and now they can focus on the fight between Lester and Faulkner. To combat his gagging problem, Faulkner goes to a hypnotherapist. Who knows if it will help, but it made for interesting television. Lester, too, is facing mental blocks. His face is still hurting from the last fight, and he's afraid he's not strong enough for the fight.
Frank Lester vs. David Faulkner (Welterweight)
Round 1: Henderson is begging Lester to throw jabs, but he doesn't comply. Instead, the two engage in ugly stand-up until Faulkner gets a takedown. They both get right up from that, and get in a clinch against the fence. As the round comes to an end, Faulkner looks exhausted.
Between the rounds, Dana tells the Tapout crew -- with Mask, before he was killed -- about Lester pulling out his mouthpiece with all of his teeth still in it. They are impressed.
Round 2: Faulkner is backing up as soon as the round starts. Lester stops circling for a second when he notices Faulkner's mouthpiece on the ground. As Bisping hands the mouthpiece back to Faulkner, he says, "Keep that [expletive] mouthpiece in!" Lester seems much fresher as he throws kicks and punches. He is effective in the clinch, landing knees. Henderson tells Lester that he'll knock him out if he gets off the cage. Lester tries, but he is starting to show that he is tired. His nose is also bleeding, dripping down Faulkner's back as they clinch up.
That fight was ugly, and Dana is thinking it will go to a third round. In his corner, Faulkner says that he can't go a third round. Too bad for him, because it is going to the third round.
Faulkner is near tears, saying that he can't do it. I take that back, he is in tears. He tells Mazzagatti that he can't do it, and Mazzagatti calls the fight for Lester. Team UK coaches tell Faulkner that he will regret this forever.
Dana is officially in love with Lester because of the way he has made it through the show. He was an alternate to get on the show, and he made it in. He loses his first round fight, but then makes it back when Pierce won't fight, and then he "outhearts" a guy to win. "Good [expletive.]"
Bisping is unhappy, to say it mildly. Faulkner said that he wasn't going to go out and fight when he couldn't breathe to feel macho. After this, he will pursue a movie or pro wrestling career. That's a good idea, since he has little to no chance of a career in the UFC after this performance.
Bisping takes his four fighters who are still alive out, and basically tells them that they can't give up like Faulkner did. Lester, on the other hand, is glowing after his win, and is nearly speechless.
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