Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) returns with episode two of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 18: "Team Rousey vs. Team Tate," which gets underway at the TUF house and surprise, surprise, it's a mad dash to claim bedrooms. Holy smokes it's only two minutes into the show and we already have a hot tub full of babes in bikinis.
Not surprisingly, one of the dopey male contestants wanders out and makes the standard male whoot-whoot comment.
Julianna Pena says she's "looking to do business," which hopefully doesn't mean crap in the tub. Nope, she follows that up to say she is not here to look for a boyfriend, so keep on walking Mr. Gawker. Fellow x chromosome Tim Gorman endears himself to the ladies by telling them he would never get submitted by a girl.
Maybe he forgot he's sharing a stage with an Olympic judoka?
Now it's time to hit the gym and Coach Miesha Tate gives her team a pep talk and pimps her coaching staff which includes UFC lightning rod Bryan Caraway. "Cupcake" calls it more of a "recovery day," since most of them are fresh off an elimination fight to get into the house.
Uh oh, little Timmy Gorman has a torn hamstring.
Coach Ronda Rousey kicks the door down and screams at Team Tate to exit stage left. "Rowdy" feels a little uncomfortable as a coach and sees her team members more as peers. She brings her striking coach along and puts him in charge of the stand-up.
Anthony Gutierrez is already sizing up the women and makes it seem like they all want to bang him. Raquel Pennington refers to him as "obnoxious." Chris Beal joins Gorman on the injured reserves with a bum hand but insists it won't slow him down. Shayna Baszler, meanwhile, is talking up her next fight and doesn't sound too worried about fighting Pena.
Baszler explains how she got the nickname "Queen of Spades" and it's even less compelling than you may have initially imagined (hint: it involves a deck of cards). As I'm typing, she rattles off something about a Vulcan mind-meld. Not sure what that was all about, but I'm intrigued.
Live long and tap out.
Pena is being hard on herself prior to her fight against Baszler. She doesn't like to be labeled as a "tomboy" just because she's a fighter and wants to show she can also be feminine. One advantage she has is previous training experience with Tate, who wants her No. 1 pick to "overwhelm" her foe.
Stranger things have happened.
UFC President Dana White makes an impromptu visit to the training facility and just like that, the doctor pulls Tim Gorman from the show. In like a lion and out like a lamb. So guess who's coming back? Yep, it's Louis Fissette, who is affectionately labeled as "lives with his parents."
Gotta start somewhere, I suppose.
Time for the weigh ins! Most fighters are picking the more-experienced Baszler, who sticks an ace of spades card down Pena's shirt during the staredown and says her opponent is "shaking in her boots." Dayummmmmm. Peggy Morgan thinks it's a first-rounder.
Wow, Baszler is still talking smack, so she better win -- and win big -- after all this yapping. Even Coach Rousey says Pena "doesn't deserve to breathe the same air as her." Spadey is going to "teach her a lesson" and show UFC it was wrong for passing her up the first time around.
Shanya Baszler (Team Rousey) vs. Julianna Pena (Team Tate)
Round 1: No touch of gloves and Pena comes out firing. She lands a few bombs and backs Baszler into the fence. From there she gets taken down but gets back to her feet in a scramble -- then taken right back down again. She gives up her back and but avoids the rear naked choke before getting back to guard. Baszler is working from the top and eating elbows in the process. Pena muscles her way back up and looks for a leg but gets tangled up and they fall to the ground. Pena busy from her back with punches and Baszler slinks into side control. She then rolls for a guillotine but loses position and ends up on her back. Pena starts raining down bombs and Baszler trips her up, stands over Pena and attacks from the top. Close round. 10-9 Baszler?
Round 2: Both girls come out throwing heavy leather. Baszler too tired to get the trip takedown and gets clocked for her efforts. Pena backed into the fence and both ladies are sucking wind. Pena turns Baszler around and lands two big knees. Then another. Baszler goes for the takedown but is so winded she ends up on her back. She tries to roll out of danger and Pena takes her back. In a stunning turn of events, the "Queen of Spades" is forced to tap.
Pena def. Baszler via submission (rear naked choke)
Following the fight, both Rousey and Baszler are in tears. Shayna tells "Rowdy" she just threw away 11 years of mixed martial arts (MMA), despite being "three times the fighter" Pena is. Coach Tate attributes the win to "heart." Hard to argue after a performance like that.
Stay tuned next week as Chris Holdsworth takes on the banged-up Chris Beal while Rousey and Tate have a war of words at the local watering hole.
See you in seven!