The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 12: Episode 3 recap and discussion


The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) Season 12, featuring welterweight coaches (and division rivals) Josh Koscheck and Georges St. Pierre, is back for Episode 3 with Team GSP out to an early 1-0 lead.

Fresh off his elimination win last week, Alex Caceres celebrates with a giant stogie and a round of shots. He also takes center stage after obtaining a pretty good buzz and starts bragging about his win until his house mates can't stand the sound of his voice.

Team GSP hits the training center and as expected it's very loosey-goosey. "Rush" brings in Gia Sissaouri, a world class wrestling champion to help school the new recruits in the art of mat work.

Later in the day, Team Koscheck gets their turn in the gym and they look like the gang that couldn't shoot straight. Guys are taking rest breaks, bathroom breaks, basically any break they can think of to get out of training.

"Kos" lays into his students to let them know that dogging it won't win you the show. They suck it up and give 110% to close out the session.

Time for the fight picks and Team GSP has control. They choose Michael Johnson to face Aaron Wilkinson. St. Pierre may be looking for the path of least resistance as the general consensus is that Johnson is the heavy favorite.

Just not to Wilkinson.

Johnson gives us some background on his path to The Ultimate Fighter. Season 12 is the culmination of several auditions over the past few years and he looks hungry. Can he maintain his composure and not dump his load on fight night?

GSP has faith in his top pick and thinks it will be a lopsided affair.

Out in the parking lot, Koscheck has his boys park their cars on both sides of GSP's rental, blocking the doors so he can't get in. Unfortunately Rush is not rattled and shimmies his way in through the passenger side.

Wilkinson is one of the Wolfslair boys, which means -- yep, he sounds like Britbing.

Kos refers to him as "English" and drills him on striking. Wilks wants to break the stereotype that Brits can't wrestle and shows off some of his moves against the cage. Kos nods in approval -- then promises to motorboat St. Pierre's ass.


Johnson and Wilkinson both weigh in without incident. Dana drops by to give a very ambiguous prediction and both camps make an argument for their fighter.

Coach GSP asks Dana to make a call to Mike Tyson and bring him in to give his team a pep talk. "Iron" Mike obliges and makes a surprise walk-on that naturally leaves the cast starstruck.

Rush makes a "Punch-Out" reference. War Nintendo!

Elimination fight #2: Michael Johnson (8-4) vs. Aaron Wilkinson (6-3)

Round 1: I check the clock and it's 10:35. This thing goes to the cards? Early feeling out process on the feet. A kick here, a punch there. They go to the cage and Johnson with a takedown. Wilkinson is up and they break away. Johnson has a kick caught but Wilkinson can't take him down. Center of the cage and a combo stumbles "English." He shakes it off and lands a low kick. Johnson answers with one of his own and secures a huge takedown. Wilkinson scrambles and eats a few in the clinch before changing levels and holding the legs. Wilkinson is patient and gets the takedown. Wilky is landing elbows and Team GSP is starting to panic. Johnson looks like a deer in the headlights. Wilkinson continues to drop elbows while not the most damaging, are scoring huge points. Round ends with English on top. 10-9 for the Brit on the unofficial Nostradumbass scorecard.

Round 2: That creepy guy from Team GSP's coaching staff looks like Crispin Glover as George McFly. Quick exchange of hands and Johnson stuns Wilkinson before pushing him to the fence. They break away and bear hug before Johnson lands a big takedown. Wilkinson gets back to his feet and tries for a takedown of his own. He gets it and goes right back to the elbow barrage. This time Johnson shows some urgency and is able to reverse and drop some bombs of his own. Wilkinson stands and they throw leather. St. Pierre with his Canadian Fonzie: "Ehhhh!" The pace slows as both guys tire. Dana yells something semi-inspirational. Wilkinson tries for a takedown but can't get it. He shoots again to no avail. Time expires and hands are flying. 10-9 Johnson.

Round 3: Johnson comes out firing and Wilkinson crumbles against the fence. Johnson goes batshit with his hands forcing English to give up his back. From there it's elementary.

Michael Johnson defeats Aaron Wilkinson via submission (rear naked choke)

After the fight, Dana thinks the presence of Mike Tyson helped Johnson dig deep for round three. Wilkinson apologizes to his team for letting the fight get away. Coach Koscheck is proud of his performance and doesn't dwell on the loss which keeps the team out of a funk.

Stay tuned next week as "Iron" Mike helps train Team GSP, Koscheck tries to rattle "Rush" by wearing speedos, Bruce Leroy runs his mouth into overdrive and of course, the next elimination fight.

See you next week!

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