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Episode 11 of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF): “Redemption” is back on FOX Sports 1 later tonight (Weds., June 28, 2017), featuring a cast of ex-TUF guys trying to redeem themselves and earn another crack at UFC superstardom under the tutelage of head coaches Cody Garbrandt and TJ Dillashaw.
If you missed last week’s episode click here for our complete recap.
Four fighters left, all from Team Dillashaw: Tom Gallicchio, Dhiego Lima, Jesse Taylor, and James Krause. Tonight’s semifinal fight will be Gallicchio vs. Lima, with Taylor vs. Krause on hold until next week.
Krause, who suffered a scratched cornea in his last fight, will have to be medically cleared in the coming days. If he can’t make it, UFC President Dana White gives Cody the go-ahead to pick his replacement. Team Garbrandt is ecstatic, while Team Dillashaw is beyond pissed. Ramsey Nijem in particular is furious, although Gilbert Smith is not happy with his complaining.
Smith tries to get in Nijem’s face about it, but winds up more or less embarrassing himself as Nijem calls his bluff and gives him grief when Smith threatens to “beat the shit” out of him. Nijem also gets in some quality zingers during the one-on-one interview. My favorites:
“What is he going to do, dry-hump me?”
“He’s all fat. He looks like the only thing he can fight is diabetes.”
Okay, fight prep time. Lima gets first billing. Coach TJ will be teaching both of them how to beat one another; for Lima, that means maintaining distance and staying off the ground.
Before we get to Gallicchio, though, TJ and Co. use blue paint and a few copies to turn the red team’s locker room into a perfect replica of the blue team’s to make whoever gets the room feel at home.
It takes Seth Baczynski about four full seconds to realize what’s happened when he walks in. He does give them props for a good joke, but he and the rest of Team Garbrandt quickly use red tape and some markers to reclaim the place.
Back in the house proper, Krause is frustrated with people asking about his eye, accusing them of just wanting to take his place. This boils over when Johnny Nuñez asks him and Krause flips him off before going berserk.
Okay, now it’s (finally) Gallicchio’s time. “Toothless Tom” talks about how his parents urged him to walk away and he’s excited to be able to go home to them “a winner.”
After a commercial break, Dillashaw gets inspired by Team Garbrandt’s “Snake-Free Zone” graffiti to release some snakes in their locker room. They’re ball pythons and other harmless species, but they’re enough to freak out Julian Lane and Urijah Faber.
Both fighters weigh in at 170.5. We get to see Gallicchio psyching himself up before breakfast on fight day.
170 lbs.: Tom Gallicchio (19-9) vs. Dhiego Lima (12-5)
Round 1: Lima’s height advantage is immediately obvious as he cracks Gallicchio with a stiff jab. Head kick blocked, jab lands. One minute in. Gallicchio tries to step in with a low kick and eats a counter a minute in. Gallicchio shoots, denied. Lima continues to score with his jab. Gallicchio with a right hand two minutes in. Counter right connects for Lima. Overhands by Gallicchio in response. Lima lands a straight right and denies a takedown with two minutes to go.
Right hand from Lima and he sprawls on another shot. Gallicchio just can’t get inside. One minute to go and Lima denies another takedown. More counters land for him. Nasty 1-2-3 connects in the waning seconds. 10-9 Lima.
Round 2: Lima catches him coming in with another left hook. Gallicchio gets in deeper than ever before on a single-leg, but gets denied and cracked with a knee. One minute in. Left hook from Lima, but Gallicchio finally gets him down with a single-leg. Lima pops back up and sprawls as Gallicchio continues to drive, eventually extracting his leg two minutes in. Hard 1-2 stings Gallicchio, then a head kick that’s barely blocked. Great counter combination by Lima with two minutes to go.
Another good combination capped off by a leg kick. Lima sprawls once again and shoves Gallicchio aside with an underhook, but he grabbed the fence to do so and he loses a point. One minute to go. Gallicchio shoots, sprawled and cracked with punches. Check hook. Gallicchio shoots again, sprawled. Lima goes low-high, then scores with an uppercut. Body shot to low kick. Straight right and a 1-2 before the bell. 9-9 with the point deduction.
Round 3: Quick hug to start the round. Gallicchio still pressing forward, sprawled on again. 1-2 from Lima. Straight right lands for Gallicchio, his best punch so far. One minute in. He shoots, sprawled. Lima stalking and blasts him with another straight right before denying a shot. Right hand as Gallicchio stands, then another. Lima going for the finish and Herb Dean warns Gallicchio to fight back. Tom shoots, sprawled. Two minutes in. More heavy punches by Lima and he denies another takedown. Gallicchio looks tired, but he finally hits a takedown into guard halfway through the round. Lima working to kick him off, Gallicchio removes his butterfly hooks. Two minutes to go.
Gallicchio passes to half guard. Lima works his way to his knees and stands while Gallicchio holds the front headlock. He loses it with a minute to go. Gallicchio is totally spent and Lima blasts him with hammerfists as he desperately tries to shoot. Lima then hits a takedown of his own to end the fight. 10-9 Lima.
Final result: Lima def. Gallicchio by unanimous decision
Lima is fired up after reaching the finals once again, while Gallicchio is despondent. He does manage to joke about “losing a tooth” with the doctors and the team comes together to pump him up.
Here’s where we stand after episode 11:
Seth Baczynski Mehdi Baghdad Eddie Gordon Hayder Hassan Julian Lane Justin Edwards Johnny Nunez
Joe Stevenson Tom Gallicchio Gilbert Smith
Tom Gallicchio vs. Dhiego Lima
Jesse Taylor vs. James Krause
Stay tuned next week as Tim Elliott comes to visit and winds up getting into a fight after running his mouth. Sadly, we don’t get to see the result of Krause’s eye test until the final episode, but the preview doesn’t look good.
See you in seven!