Episode 6 of “The Ultimate Fighter 16” picked up where the last episode left off. Coaches and fighters reacted to last week’s controversial decision between Igor Araujo and Nic Heron-Webb.
UFC president Dana White said, “That’s as bad as it gets,” about there not being a third round. White entered Team Nelson’s locker room and told Nic Herron-Webb that he was “robbed” of a third round.
“Tremendous problem here in mixed martial arts and boxing, the judges don’t see it that way. One judge had it going to a third round and that’s it,” said White. “You never know until it happens, but I honestly think Nic was robbed out of a third round.”
“I thought we were going to three. I thought Nic did more than enough,” said Roy Nelson, Herron-Webb’s coach. “Dana even thought he did more than enough, so it’s just one of those things. Don’t’ leave it in the hands of the judges.”
Team Carwin retained matchmaking control with Araujo’s victory and was looking to extend their win streak to three in-a-row with this week’s match-up.
The fighters gathered inside the UFC training center for the official fight announcement. Coach Carwin chose Team Nelson’s Colton Smith to take on the experienced Eddy Ellis.
Ellis began fighting professionally when he was 16 years old. Heading into the bout with Smith, Ellis had 34 professional matches under his belt. Smith had only four.
“I started my career when I was pretty young, when I was 16. I took a lot of fights just to get my experience rather than actually taking fights to win, I guess you could say. I was kind of thrown to the wolves a little bit,” said Ellis. “I kind of took some beatings when I was young, but at the same time, I just learned through it. I’ve been beaten every way and I’ve won in every way. It kind of made me the man I am today really.”
Smith felt his experience on the battlefield serving in the military would make up for his lack of time inside the cage.
“Being in the military has really pushed me in my MMA career as well. I think my time in combat and what I’ve seen in combat at a young age has really set the pace for my MMA career,” said Smith. “The guy in the cage can’t kill me. He doesn’t have a bomb. He doesn’t have a gun. I feel like it’s a big advantage knowing he’s unarmed. I’m unarmed. You know, let’s do this.”
Colton Smith vs. Eddy Ellis:
Smith secured an early takedown and the fight was going his way through the first half of the opening round. Ellis worked his way back to his feet and applied pressure, but was taken down again. Ellis, again, worked his way back to his feet and began to take over the round. With just over two minutes on the clock, Ellis landed a right hand as Smith was coming in. The well-placed punched dropped Smith to one knee. Ellis took Smith down and bloodied him with elbows. Smith got up only to be taken down again. MMAWeekly.com scored the round 10-9 for Ellis.
Smith regrouped and secured a takedown early in the second stanza. He advanced his position to side control and bloodied Ellis with short elbows. Smith maintained top control, but referee Herb Dean stood the fighters up with a minute left in the round while Smith was in a dominant position. Ellis poured on the pressure but ate a right hand that hurt him late in the round. The second round was all Smith.
At the conclusion of the second round, it looked as if we were going to a sudden-death third round. That wouldn’t be the case. The judges scored the fight for Smith by majority decision. The judges scored the second round 10-8 for Smith.
“Before the announcement was read, I’m thinking a third round because I gave the first round to Eddy and the second round definitely for Colton,” said Coach Nelson, Smith’s coach.
“I think everyone in the gym thought this was going to a third round,” said Dana White. “Maybe it was a good thing that Eddy Ellis didn’t take any more damage, but it looked like Colton at the end of the first round didn’t need any more damage either. You never know in this sport.”
Ellis took the loss like a veteran does.
“I don’t like being fluffed up before a fight, don’t fluff me up after,” he said. “A win is a win and a loss is a loss. He did what he was supposed to do.”
Smith visited Team Carwin’s locker room to tell Ellis that he thought there should have been a third round.
Smith gave props to Ellis and then looked to the next task at hand.
“I have mad respect for Eddy Ellis. Eddy rocked me the first round, and I don’t know if I’ve ever been hit like that before,” said Smith. “Next opponent, watch it man. I’m getting better with striking. I need to get off a little faster in my fights, but watch the wrestling. Let’s go in there and bang it out. I’m going to take you down. I’m going to ground and pound you. I’m going to cut you up. You’re going to cut me up. It’s going to be a war, but I’m going to win.”
Team Nelson gained matchmaking control with the win.