Welcome back for The Ultimate Fighter 13 Episode 5 blog with Chuck "Cold Steel" O'Neil. I wanted to start off by thanking everyone for all of the positive support! Now on to the show.
This episode picks up where last episode ended, with Brock trying to give a pep talk and light a fire under us. As I said last time, I feel it was something that was definitely needed but just not at this particular time. As each day passed, our team became less and less patient with Brock and the coaching staff.
Our practices were turning into somewhat of a joke at this point. There was one day where we ran for 10 minutes outside, hit mitts with a partner for two five-minute rounds and then hit the sauna. I'm sorry, but these practices aren't at the level needed to produce UFC-caliber fighters. I was getting to the point where I felt I was beginning to regress as a fighter, and I was not ok with this. As I've touched on before, I'm quite outspoken and say what's on my mind. That being said, I went up to our coach Erik Paulson and told him that we needed more full MMA rounds in the cage.
After our one solid day of training, things went right back into cruise control mode. After the fight selection, it was clear that Tony and I would be fighting on a double-header day three days from the current fight pick. Knowing this, we both felt we could get ample training and focus time on what we needed to work on to prep for the fight. Unfortunately, our coaches had other ideas. They had each of us hit mitts for seven one-minute rounds and had us hit the showers.
If that wasn't bad enough, they gave us the following day off telling us that we needed to rest up for our weight cuts. I was really starting to get annoyed now, especially seeing our training sessions get filled up with Brock's training partners who had fights coming up. While those guys were there, they had us working takedowns with the heavyweights. They were also cutting into our coaches' focus on us.
The fight pick for this week came right after Charlie's loss. The coaches thought Team JDS was definitely coming for Clay, however they thought he'd be matched up against a stronger ground fighter in either Justin or Zach. Reason being that during the coaches' assessment, Clay had mentioned being taken down and submitted by a few guys. Clay truly is a well-rounded fighter so I'm guessing he was just having an off day.
Oddly enough we got the matchup we wanted for Clay and were very happy with the pick. Both Clay and Mick were on the smaller side for 170, and from the sounds of it, both liked to stand and exchange, which is exactly what they did.
During the prep period, as shown, Clay began to become more vocal on the Chris situation. Most of the guys on our team felt that Chris was focusing a lot on what each of us did during every practice. Personally, I never seemed to notice it too much, and the situation really didn't bother me. If Chris wanted to take notes on my whole fight style, that's fine, because in the end, he would still have to stop what I did well. Not to mention I feel in one aspect or another, we all understood this was a competition, and we all took small mental notes on all of our teammates. We would be idiots not to.
It became somewhat of a nightly ritual for our team to sit around and talk about how sketchy Chris was. Len actually wouldn't stop talking about it. Tony and Clay are kind of go-with-the-flow guys and didn't really stir up too much trouble, while Nordin and Charlie were actually pretty fond of Chris. Chris and I had our ups and downs, but I was never really too concerned with what he was doing. He did his own thing, and I did mine. I was more so trying to stir the pot, so to speak, anytime the team would get going.
Showing Chris my butt (which is quite nice if you can get your hands on the uncensored episode) was one of the many ridiculous things I did to him on the show. I had told him I'd get him to see my butt (which we nicknamed The Predator) on 10 separate occasions. It just so happens that this particular time made it through the editing process and was on national TV. All I can say is I'm sure that's not the last we will see of The Predator this season.
After Charlie's fight and injury, he began to be down in the dumps quite a bit for completely underperforming and not fighting. He decided to get off his short-lived diet and have me start cooking what we called "naughty food" for him. This started to become a game to me to see how fast and how often I could put Charlie into a food coma. His favorite meal was a ground bison omelet with about half a pound of cheese in it. That would usually put Charlie in the spirit world for at least an hour.
He began ordering silly foods on his own at this point as well, such as lunchables, chips, cookies, sugar-filled espresso drinks and fruit snacks. The morning of Clay's fight, Charlie told me he wanted me to make him a shake and stop eating "naughty food," only to follow up that statement with a package of Gushers and an espresso on our way to the gym. This is definitely a reoccurring theme and became a running joke as the season went on.
On to the fight. For starters, Clay had picked myself and Charlie to travel with him to the fight. During this period, we were there to keep Clay focused during his warm-up process. Both myself and Charlie overheard Brock make a comment of "19 more days till I get to wake up." Luckily enough, Clay didn't hear this comment, but it definitely left myself and Charlie pretty pissed with ole Unky Brock. He clearly did not want to be there.
The fight was primarily on the feet which saw Clay dictate the tempo about 80 percent of the time. Mick didn't show a whole lot in this fight; he looked super stiff and couldn't really get off any punches. Clay seemed to get a little tired toward the halfway point of the second round.This stood out big time to me as every fight, outside of Chris', the fighter from Team Lesnar seemed to gas. It just showed even more that we weren't training hard enough, and Team JDS was out conditioning us. The judges came to a decision after the fight went both rounds and gave Clay the unanimous decision win.
Clay was overcome with emotion after the fight as he has been pushing through life and fighting hard to make it to this point. Keeping both his brother and dad's memories close to him and on his heart, he broke down after the fight saying this win was for them.
Unfortunately, after the excitement of Clay's win began to settle down, we noticed his pinky wasn't looking too good. Upon further inspection, we realized the bone was poking through his skin. So yay Clay won, but he's off to the hospital. Things were starting to look pretty down within Team Lesnar as we were all bummed out for Clay.
The episode ends with a preview for next week's episode showing that the world will finally get to see what the two alternates along with Zach and Tony can do in the octagon. Finally, people can stop asking me when I will be fighting and now know that I will be fighting on next week's episode. So tune in!
That's all for this week. Make sure to check back next week for The Ultimate Fighter 13 Episode 6 blog with the only man on the show left with a beard, Chuck "Cold Steel" O'Neil.
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