The show starts out with Shamar Bailey talking about stiffness in his back and how it affects his breathing. That’s not good. Especially since his fighting Chris Cope, who has a pretty decent gas tank. Right then, Cope walks out of the house and does his famous “Whhooo!” yell. I know he says he does it all the time, but I think he’s doing it on purpose now to get under Bailey’s skin. It does seem to be working though.
UFC Middleweight Brian Stann makes a special appearance and speaks to the teams about discipline and the way of life of a fighter and how you have to work hard to get to the top. That’s pretty cool. Stann is on a tear lately and I agree with everything he told the guys. This type of life doesn’t just happen. You have to bleed for it. No pun intended.
Junior Dos Santos is telling Ramsey Nijem to throw punches and then shoot for a takedown and take Clay Harvison’s back and get a choke. Brock Lesnar is showing Clay Harvison how to defending the takedown and tells him to keep it standing. This should be an interesting fight. I’m not sold on Nijem being the top guy in this year’s competition. If Harvison can keep it standing, he’ll win.
After a weird weigh in, it was time for the first fight of the show.
Ramsey Nijem vs. Clay Harvision
I would love to go into detail on what happened in this fight. But I can’t because Harvison definnitley didn’t follow the game plan. He let Nijem in too close, was taken down, and after Nijem took his back and landed some setup shots, was choked out by a Rear Naked Choke. That was quick, but I’m still not sold on Nijem, but that puts Team JDS up 4-5.
Onto the next tandem of fighters.
Dos Santos thinks Shamar Bailey is going to take this fight easily. Bailey wants to bring pressure and then take Chris Cope down when he gets the opportunity. Lesnar is showing Cope exactly what he showed Harvison, how to defend the takedown. Hopefully Cope listens and absorbed some of that. You couldn’t ask for a better teacher of wrestling than Brock Lesnar.
Shamar Bailey vs. Chris Cope
True to form, this grudge match was far from exciting. The first round and the second round went exactly the same, with neither fighter landing a power shot to end it. Hell, Bailey pretty much gave up on the stand up part of the game altogether. For someone who wanted to shut Cope’s mouth up, he sure kept his fist as far away as possible from it. All Bailey did was shoot for takedowns. And every single one of them was stuffed. And when he pressed Cope up against the fence, he ate knees to the body and punches to the side of the head. The judges gave the fight to Cope 20-18. I agree. I’m just glad they didn’t think Bailey’s “control” of the fight meant he won. JDS was shocked and Bailey said, “He fought well, but I don’t know about that…you can’t win a fight moving backward all the time.” Uh, yeah, and you didn’t do anything whatsoever. Looks like Cope listened and learned something from Lesnar. Now it’s all tied up.
Team Lesnar – 5, Team Dos Santos – 5