Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is back for episode six of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 18, which gets underway in the Team Rousey locker room and it turns out Jessamyn Duke and Raquel Pennington were scheduled to throw down once before on the regional circuit, but the contest never came to be. Fast forward a few years to combat sports reality television and here we are.
Back at the TUF house, Julianna Pena gives Pennington -- a self-described "Tomboy" -- and Sarah Moras girlie makeovers. "Rocky" talks about her struggle of coming out of the closet and how her mom turned her back on her for being gay. Her family has abandoned her but her girlfriend hasn't.
Then they strap on stiletto heels and walk the pretend runway in little black dresses. Giggity.
Coach Tate has called in reinforcements to help her fighter defend the clinch, which Duke is bound to use because of her height and reach advantage. "Cupcake" says Pennington should not be weary of punches, as she doesn't believe Duke has the power to finish the fight.
We shall see.
In between training and reality show tomfoolery, the cast and crew head to Green Valley Ranch, a Mediterranean-inspired Luxury Las Vegas Resort, to watch "the fights." Lots of hot Hooters girls hanging around the pool and Tate is prancing around in a bikini.
No complaints here.
Duke stayed at the house instead of partaking in the fun because she wants her mind right for the fight. She talks about her past exploits as a model and actress and how her old school teachers Email her about how crazy it is that she's now a mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter.
Then the drunks come home from the party and it's starting to get ugly. The girls want to sleep and Anthony Gutierrez is acting like a douche. They bide their time and wait for his drunk ass to fall asleep, then give him a blanket party. Not surprisingly, he doesn't find it that funny.
Back to the gym.
Duke is trying to learn how to use her reach and refuses to get into a brawl with Pennington. Instead, she opts to pick her off "like a sniper." Duke thinks she can win the entire tournament if she's able to dispose of "Rocky," who she claims is the last true threat on the roster.
Let's find out.
Elimination fight #5: Jessamyn Duke (Team Rousey) vs. Raquel Pennington (Team Tate)
Round 1: Touch off gloves and Duke looks like a giant in there. The former Invicta fighter is very busy with her hands. One minute in and Pennington has yet to get going. They tie up against the cage and Duke locks in a deep standing guillotine but Pennington outlasts her arm and works free, but not before eating multiple knees to the leg. Back to the center of the cage and Duke is setting a heck of a pace. Rocky is game but getting out-struck. Penny starts to turn up the heat in the final two minutes and lands a couple of flurries. Duke gets momentarily lit up but comes back firing. They trade evenly until the bell. Close round that I give to Duke via early aggression and sub attempt.
I just saw a commercial for the DQ five-buck lunch. It gets you a burger, fries, drink and a sundae. Damn, I need to find a DQ.
Round 2: We pick up right where we left off. It's actually a replay of round one, as Duke is busy with strikes and Pennington is slow to start, even though Coach Tate keeps yelling, "You're on fire, Rocky!" Duke bumrushes and initiates the clinch, landing a few knees to the dome before Penny can break free. Duke is landing more shots, but Penny looks to be doing more damage. Duke gets tagged hard and backed into the fence but powers out with knees. Penny continues her onslaught and goes batshit with strikes, all of which land. Duke somehow survives and gets the clinch again. More knees. Hard left from Penny and Duke is in trouble but still fights back. Damn these ladies are tough. 30 seconds left and they continue to whale on each other until time expires. 10-9 Pennington.
Round 3: Touch of gloves and Pennington opens more aggressively than in rounds one and two. Duke lands a nice combo but eats a thudding leg kick. Pennington puts two to the dome. Duke continues to get backed up. Penny starts getting tagged and does some retreating of her own as the reach comes into play. One minutes left and it's full rock 'em/sock 'em robot, with Duke appearing to get the worse end of it. As I say that, she clinches and lands a couple of brutal knees. Pennington is a bloody mess. Duke looks like hamburger meat. Fight over. 10-9 Penny.
Final result: Pennington def. Duke via decision
With that fight in the books, let's take a look at the updated TUF 18 roster:
Team Tate leads 3-2.
Coach Tate tries to shake hands with Rousey after the fight and "Rowdy" tells her to fuck off. Fight was entertaining and evenly matched, but there was absolutely no ground game whatsoever, so it was missing that element.
Stay tuned next week as the dad's celebrate Father's Day, a prank by Team Tate pisses off Dana White, Ronda loses the plot and the next men's elimination fight between Josh Hill (Team Tate) and Michael Wootten (Team Rousey).
See you in seven!