When he came in that day, he wanted to talk to Dana directly and explain his side of things. I told him that he needed to find Dana and force the conversation.
Everyone knows that Dana appreciates guys that are honest and that was the best time for James to own up to what happened and tell his side. I think the conversation went well and I admire James for his honesty and also for his heart and will to win.
In episode nine, Julian confirmed once again why he was the last pick. Nobody wanted “that guy” on his team. Colton is a good guy and he showed that he was better than Julian by just squashing it. I’m glad he did because I couldn’t handle another outburst after last week’s temper tantrum.
Dom was the No. 1 pick for a reason. Roy saw a lot of promise in Dom and rightfully so. He had a good record, a good win to get into the house, and he was confident. We knew a lot about Mike Ricci coming onto the show and knew we wanted him on our team. We picked him a little late because Roy said something during the fights about him being small or something and we didn’t think Roy would pick him right away.
This match-up was going to be a war, but Mike Ricci is a stud. He is very technical, has a great camp back home, and he trains with the UFC champ, GSP, on a daily basis. We were VERY confident in Mike’s abilities.
Mike is a pleasure in the locker room. He is serious business, a true professional. From what I saw of Dom, he was the same. He was respectful the entire time he was on the show. As a fan, I was excited to see this fight.
Round 1 opens up with Mike Ricci dropping Dom with an inside leg kick and then a couple good body shots. Mike looked extremely poised and confident and Dom began looking a little desperate trying to land one big shot. Ricci is a southpaw and very technical. This presents a lot of problems for guys when they are not used to it.
Round 2, Dom was able to do what we saw him do in the majority of his fights when we were scouting him, take Mike down and stay on top. Not much damage in this round, but Dom clearly won round 2.
Round 3 was a great round. The reversal and ground and pound won the round and the fight for Mike Ricci.
The guys talking to Dana was interesting to hear. I know that everyone wants to sound confident and say that they will fight anyone, but Dana really wanted to hear who they wanted to fight. Ricci called out Hill and he got the fight. Call it Canada vs. Canada, that’s fine, but Mike Ricci just wanted to beat Roy’s No. 1 and No. 2 picks. Igor and Colton said they wanted to fight and they got the fight. The other guys all kind of just said they’d fight whoever.
That brings us to the quarterfinal fight announcements. We thought that we had a good chance of sweeping all four fights in the quarterfinals.
We couldn’t believe it when Dana announced Bristol vs. Neil. We were thinking, “Who is Neil?” because we didn’t think Team Nelson had a Neil on their team. Then when Neil stood up, it all made sense and we were pissed!
I know this isn’t really a team competition, but we were under the impression that it was Team Carwin vs. Team Nelson. If we had the chance to put four guys into the semifinals, we should be able to do that. What was the point in all the time we put into picking the best team if you are going to put two of our top four guys against each other?
This had all of us very pissed off and left with some decisions to make. Who was going to coach who and how were we going to handle this for the guys?
Tune in next week to see how the teammate vs. teammate plays out…
(Photo courtesy of Leister Bowling)
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