(The entire Raquel Pennington vs. Jessamyn Duke fight, via YouTube.com/TheUltimateFighter)
By Elias Cepeda
At the start of last night’s episode of The Ultimate Fighter, we learn that this week’s paired up opponents — Team Rousey’s Jessamyn Duke and Team Tate’s Raquel Pennington — were supposed to fight once before. Jessamyn was to make her pro debut against Raquel but her coaches made her pull out because they didn’t like the match up for her.
Jessamyn says she’s glad it is finally happening and on this large stage, no less. Raquel is like, whatever, I’m happy to fight you now because I was ready to fight you a while ago.
Raquel gets make over from Julianna Pena, who is supposedly a “little princess.” Raquel talks about the difficulty of having come out as gay to her family and learning to value her own happiness above what others think of her, while we watch her try on high heels, perhaps for the first time, and get a runway walking lesson from Julianna near the pool.
Raquel takes off the heels and gets back into the gym to work on her Muay Thai kickboxing — specifically defending against the clinch of the taller Jessamyn. Coach Tate tells Raquel not to respect Jessamyn’s punching power because she thinks the beanpole ex-model has not yet learned to hit with power. By contrast, Tate says that Raquel is the strongest girl on her team, and she’s concerned that Raquel will get going to a fast start.
After a commercial break, the teams are taken to something called The Green Valley Ranch, which seems to be a high-end bordello. A bunch of scantily clad Hooters Girls await them and pour them drinks. A pool party ensues, featuring gratuitous slo-mo shots of Tate entering the water and bikini-clad backsides. Luckily, the TUF YouTube channel has released video of that too: