In the latest installment of his TUF 11 guest-blog for CagePotato.com, Team Liddell’s Rich Attonito discusses the battle between Jamie Yager and Josh Bryant on this week’s episode, tells us about some of the house-related chaos that you didn’t get to see on the show, and reveals the annoying dude who keeps yelling "heeeeey!" during the fights.
Wednesday’s episode started with a continuation of last week’s news of Tito pulling out of the fight with Chuck. The only way Chuck wanted to give Tito an opportunity of being a coach on the show was if he was able to punch him in the face at the end. Now that wasn’t gonna happen and Chuck was pissed. I remember him saying from the first day that Tito was never going to fight him and he was only using the show for exposure. I don’t know about Tito’s intentions coming into the show but it turns out Chuck was right about the fight. Regardless of the medical reasons, which are obviously very serious.
I knew this episode would be special because everyone wanted to see what was going to happen in the Yager-Bryant fight. Yager’s been the guy with the cocky attitude and the big mouth, and everyone has wanted to see if he could back it up. Up to this point he’s done a good job of that, but Josh put a painful stop to that when he beat Yager into exhaustion and forced him to quit going into the third round.
I don’t think there was anyone on Tito’s team besides Kris McCray that wanted to see Yager win. I remember guys wishing Josh good luck before the fight and telling him they hope he beat Yager. I guess they all had enough of his ego and antics. They wanted to see him get his ass whooped. Josh was in the process of accomplishing that when Yager said "No Más" after the second round and that was all she wrote. Afterwards guys on the other team were congratulating Josh and were ecstatic that Yager lost. I got along with Yager, as we always had mutual respect for each other. But I remember thinking that his ego would be as inflated as ever if he landed himself in the semi-finals. Needless to say I was glad to see Josh get the win for a few reasons.
One of the more annoying things through out the fight was Tito’s BJJ coach Cleber yelling "heeeey hey hey heeeey!!" I had people texting me during the show asking me who the hell was making that annoying noise the entire time.
Yager got carted off in the stretcher with a neck brace. Later he said that it was a stinger he got in the neck that caused the scare. I remember when he got back from the hospital he was pretty down and his spirit seemed broken. The house had never been so quiet after that. Yager was pretty much a ghost for the remaining time in the house. This was some of the most peaceful and quiet days that we had seen since the start of the show. Made you wish he got beaten a long time ago.
After Tito got dismissed from the show by Dana, he came over with his team of coaches for a last goodbye. Him and his team were definitely bummed about the situation. Everyone in the house took the last-minute opportunity to get Tito and his coaches’ autographs on some of the apparel from the show, and vice versa. It turned into a big autograph memorabilia signing party. Kyle Noke took the opportunity to get my casted splint away from me and have everyone sign that as well. It’s made for a nice addition to my collectors items.
Kyle also kept insisting I let him sign my head — so much that I would have gotten a restraining order on him if I could get in front of a judge that would grant it. One day in the house him and Brad tried to muscle me to the floor and sign my head. I fought them off for a while, one-handed and all, until caveman Joe stepped in and helped. Then it was my trusty side kick Charlie Blanchard, a.k.a. The Hobbit, who stepped in and saved me before my dome was covered in Sharpie ink. With short time left in the house I had to be careful not to fall victim to any last-minute pranks people might try to pull off.
One major prank in the house came at the expense of Josh. Kyle and Brad were the main culprits. From the beginning of when teams were picked, they kept saying Josh was a little light in the loafers because of some joke he made. They were like a couple of fifth-graders and ended up breaking his balls the entire show. They never let him live it down. Every day these two guys would give him a hard time. If he put his hat on a certain way, if he made a comment, or even looked in their direction inside the van on the rides to the gym they would be basically accuse him of being a fruit cake. Not that theres anything wrong with that! Might I add that it was absolutely hysterical and commendable how long they continued the heckling.
So in the end the idea was sprung to dress his bed up in pink sheets, pillow cases, blankets, stuffed animal unicorns, boas, rainbows, and a life-size male blow up doll who was adorning a tiara. We pulled it off after practice back in the house while Josh was outside in the hot tub. We only had a small window of time to pull it off and everyone contributed to make sure it was a success. Except Court, his ADD kicked in during the operation and he got sidetracked drawing a bunny rabbit on a sock that was pulled over one of the edges of the second floor stair railing. When Josh finally saw the prank he laughed and took it like a good sport. Its amazing what six weeks locked up in a house will drive you to do for the sake of personal entertainment.
The semi-final match ups were announced and the road to the Finale was set. Now Team Liddell would see two teammates do battle as Brad and Court square off. On the other side it was a much anticipated rematch of Josh and Kris. With so much on the line and only a few days left in the house excitement was brewing to see the conclusion of this crazy show that we had all signed up for. Everyone was going to be happy to finally be going home, as soon as the remaining business was handled. In the meantime, we just had to keep from killing each other, which proved to be more difficult for some of us then you would think.
Thanks to my sponsors: Buffalo Wings & Rings (Coconut Creek), Institute of Human Performance (IHP), and American Top Team. Be sure to follow me @ twitter.com/RichAttonito and on Facebook for all the updates on my life and training.