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‘The Ultimate Fighter’ 12.10 Recap: Mad Dogs and Englishmen

(Kyle Watson, Michael Johnson, and John Danaher join host Stephan Bonnar to run down last night’s fights on the latest episode of "The Aftermath." Warning: Danaher drops a "retard" joke within the first 30 seconds of the interview. Anybody else getting a Lanny Poffo vibe from this guy?)

Michael Johnson is one of those dudes who can’t appreciate the sheer hilarity of being sprayed with water. When Sako (or was it Sevak? one of those guys) rigs the sink to blast the next person who uses it, MJ is on the losing end and freaks out. So immature, you guys! Michael is convinced that Alex Caceres is to blame, I guess because he saw Alex pull the same prank the day before. Their quarterfinal fight can’t come soon enough.

But first, Kyle Watson and Aaron Wilkinson will have to face off. GSP says Aaron is a better striker than Kyle, so Kyle needs to get the fight to the ground. Kyle’s plan is to take Aaron down from the clinch, rather than shooting in. Logically, Coach Koscheck advises "English" to keep the fight standing. After three fights in the house, Aaron’s right eye is looking rough. And it’s go-time already…

Round 1: Kyle starts with a fast leg kick, then lands two more, one to the outside and one to the inside. Kyle clinches up and takes Aaron down, just like he said he would, and gets into side control. Aaron establishes half-guard. Kyle throws a couple punches down to Aaron’s head. Kyle locks up, looking for an arm-triangle. Aaron rolls and escapes to his feet. He’s warned for holding the fence as Kyle takes him down again and gets into mount. Kyle slams Aaron down with his body, GSP/Galbraith-style. Kyle works his way around to Aaron’s back, and starts softening him up with punches as he looks for the rear-naked choke. Aaron keeping his chin tucked, doing his best to defend. Kyle has the body-triangle locked. It looks bad for Aaron. English finally succumbs to the RNC and taps.

Aaron is embarrassed about his performance, and Koscheck is stunned that another one of his guys has lost by rear-naked choke. But enough about those losers. Kyle Watson becomes the next TUF 12 semi-finalist, and doesn’t have a single mark on his face.

Coach St. Pierre has one more special-guest trick up his sleeve: Boxing guru Freddie Roach, who led Manny Pacquiao to a tenth world title in his eighth weight-division last weekend. Roach holds pads for Brookins, Johnson, and Caceres, giving them pointers here and there. Roach actually says that Johnson reminds him a little of Pacquaio. Huh. He also calls Buce Leroy clumsy and awkward, but effective. That makes a little more sense.

GSP is not going to corner Michael or Alex during their match. Alex says that Michael choosing to fight him due to emotional reasons was an error on his part. He stuffs MJ’s takedowns in practice, and it’ll be the same thing during the fight. He’s gonna make Michael chase air.

As we already saw, Koscheck feels that Alex is being sacrificed by GSP to get Michael into the semi-finals. So, he’s rooting for Alex, and talking trash to Michael. "I can’t wait ’til Bruce kicks your ass," he says. "You’re a black version of Georges." (A black version of Georges St. Pierre? My God, the levels of athleticism and explosiveness would be unmeasurable.) Kos needles GSP for throwing Alex under the bus. Georges keeps quiet, but the way he sort-of-nervously chomps on his water bottle reveals that maybe Kos’s analysis has some truth to it.

"A little black on black crime," somebody says during the face-off at the weigh-ins. "He’s not black," MJ deadpans.

Koscheck offers to corner Alex in the fight, but Alex already picked Jeff Lentz to support him. An odd selection since Lentz doesn’t particularly like Alex, but it seems that nobody else wanted to do it. (Kyle will be cornering Michael.) As Alex warms up with his beloved hurricane kicks and Lee-esque footwork, Lentz keeps saying "don’t do that." Maybe Alex should have accepted Koscheck’s offer after all. Grudge match time…

Round 1: Alex lands first with a leg kick. Alex gets in a push kick as Michael charges forward. Michael shoots and slams Alex, then gets into half guard. Alex kicks Michael off and escapes. He tries a high kick. Michael with a punch and low kick. Alex returns with a body kick. Michael punches Alex’s mouthpiece out and Herb Dean immediately pauses the action to get it back in. Michael stalks forward throwing bombs before clinching. He drags Alex to the ground and gets in guard. Alex tries to scramble out, but Michael stays on. Alex gets some distance, stands up and throws some punches. They trade strikes. Alex attacks with punches, Michael clinches. Alex gets in a knee to the dome. Michael throws leather, and puts Alex’s back against the fence. A knee from Alex and they separate. Michael whiffs on some haymakers. Alex falls while landing a body kick and Michael is on him. Alex kicks him off again. Michael moves forward punching until they’re clinching again against the fence. Alex separates but eats some shots in the escape. Alex throws some knees in a final clinch, including one that Michael complains was low. MJ had the slight edge in the round, but it was competitive, and Alex might be the fresher fighter going into round 2.

Round 2: Alex starts with a body kick. He gets caught in midair throwing a superman punch, and Michael slams him down. Short elbows from Michael, in side control. Alex trying to work to a better position, but Michael is tenacious on top of him. Michael blasts some hard punches from the top. Alex is trapped against the cage momentarily, but finally gets up and they start brawling. A knee from Alex. Michael shoots in and takes Alex’s back, but he falls off and Alex gets on top briefly. He’s been smiling the entire fight, the crazy bastard. Michael gets up and takes Alex down, throwing down some shots here and there, but his pace has slowed. Alex tries to get up, but Michael drags him down. Alex gets up and nails Michael with a straight left. He gets clinched up again while tryin a knee. Michael with one more slam, and sneaks in an elbow from the top as the round ends.

Alex was a game opponent, but Michael Johnson’s takedowns ruled the day, and he wins the unanimous decision. GSP says it was a great fight, Kos says it sucked. MJ says he gained a lot of respect for Alex in the fight.

Dana White and the head coaches meet to figure out the semi-final matchups. Koscheck says he wants Nam Phan vs. Michael Johnson. Picking with his emotions maybe? He’d love to see his only semi-finalist smash MJ. At any rate, GSP says the matchup works for him, and the bracket is set with zero arguments. On the way to the gym to make the matchups official, Koscheck threatens to de-pants GSP, just like he did to Nurse Tate. He should totally try to do that during their fight next month!

Semifinal #1 will be Jonathan Brookins vs. Kyle Watson. Semifinal #2 will be Michael Johnson vs. Nam Phan. MJ gets up in Phan’s face, sort of playfully, sort of not. Phan cowers in fear, sort of playfully, sort of not. They grin and shove each other. It’s not exactly a grudge match, but let’s be honest, each man stands in the way of the other putting food on their families. GSP says that Brookins/Watson could go either way, but Johnson will beat Phan. Not that he’s biased or anything.

In two weeks: The two-hour semifinal extravaganza that will change everything. Your predictions, please…

Cagepotato Comments

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stopdrinkingpee- November 19, 2010 at 12:43 am
"Michael is tenacious on top of him." Pause.

@imabigfan- I too thought Kyle did a good job, for pretty much the same reasons as logdog.

To those who haven't watched the Aftermath, it's worth it just for John Danaher. He's fucking awesome. Not funny, just smart, informative, makes a ton of sense.

Assuming it's Brookins and Nam in the finals, I'd like to see Kyle vs Sako, English vs Bruce Leroy, and Cody vs Michael at the finale. I don't really need to see Caceres again, but I assume the UFC thinks I do.
logdog52- November 18, 2010 at 3:52 pm
I've got MJ and Kyle Watson in the finals.

@imabigfan- actually I thought kyle did a good job as a corner man. He was calm, clear, and gave easy to follow instructions. I'd much rather have that than my coach yelling "do something!" at me the whole fight. Also, I thought MJ did a good job listening to his corner.
Titos Head- November 18, 2010 at 12:04 pm
Man! John Danaher has one DOPE combover
Shifty-Eyed Dog- November 18, 2010 at 11:55 am
I still think it's Brookins and Phan in the finals because Brookins was wearing a Nam Phan t-shirt on last week's Aftermath.
itsgalf- November 18, 2010 at 11:40 am
I want my girlfriend to wear a meat dress

...just kidding. I don't have a girlfriend
Tardjitsu- November 18, 2010 at 11:12 am
In the finals Fraggle waxes philosophical about the mysteries of the universe. While Nam's logical asian mind is occupied trying to understand metaphysical quandaries, Fraggle chokes him the fuck out.
imabigfan- November 18, 2010 at 11:10 am
was anyone else annoyed at kyle in MJ's corner? I am the keyboardiest of warriors and I feel I could have cornered with that ability.

Stay on top. Don't let him hit you. Don't let him do that either. Yeah, that's better. Now, you hit him. Good. Watch out. He's doing stuff. Don't let stuff happen. Good. You're winning.

Tardjitsu- November 18, 2010 at 10:58 am
Fraggle vs the quiet asian guy with glasses.
RSparrow- November 18, 2010 at 10:10 am
Yazloz18 needs a dvd for his first comment.
Flying_Taint_Punch- November 18, 2010 at 9:56 am
I hate to say this, but as soon as the fight was over I felt the same as Kos, the fight just seemed BLAH. I felt as Viva said, that I was maybe being a Bitchass, because I really don't like MJ (prolly cause he can't take a joke) and I kind of Enjoy Alex's duche baggedness. After further review, it was an ok fight..... but they didn't seem to match up well.... it really did seem that MJ would have been a better match with Kyle Watson. I understand this is exactly the point of MMA though.
I would really like to see Bruce Leroy vs the Kenzitine though.
Shaky- November 18, 2010 at 9:09 am
He is kinda like the genius. You really like that dude though don't you? You referenced him in the recaps last series as well
Viva Hate- November 18, 2010 at 8:42 am
Kos showed some true bitchassness last night with the whole "this fight sucked" garbage over and over. He didn't want this fight and so he was determined to hate on it no matter what went on and sulk because he did not get his way. BITCHASSNESS!
J-Dog- November 18, 2010 at 8:13 am
It will be Brookins & Phan in the finals.
Austin3210- November 18, 2010 at 7:52 am
So what happened to the little back yard brawl that supposed to go down this season? They showed a clip of it as scenes for the season, but in the preview from next week they didn't mention it.
Shifty-Eyed Dog- November 18, 2010 at 7:23 am
Koscheck is a child - besides his stupid pranks and teasing.
He has this constant hate for MJ and criticizes his fighting. That's funny, considering he was Kos's FIRST CHOICE, but he got tricked out of it. But because he didn't get what he wanted, Kos acts like if he can't have him, he doesn't want him to win for the other team. What a child.
rearnakedchickenchoke- November 18, 2010 at 7:01 am
GSP is depantsed and revealed to have a vagina, leading the UFC to create a women's division. No word yet on whether his ongoing hormone therapy will be allowed by the local athletic commisions once transitioned over.
Yazloz18- November 18, 2010 at 6:50 am
I think at the end of the day we all just want to be able to put food on our families.

I had Brookins winning it all after his first fight in the house and I think Johnson/Nam will be one of those style vs style match ups that Nam wins when he sinks some crazy choke/arm bar that Johnson can't slam his way out of
Blackleg- November 18, 2010 at 6:46 am
From the clips I'd say it goes the distance for MJ v. Phan with MJ maybe squeaking out a decision win.

Brookins will win handily I think, in the semi and the final.