by Matt Brown for MMAWeekly.com
There is a lot to talk about for this week’s show. What a crazy week it was for us.
First off though I would like to speak about Paul Bradley. I can’t tell you how sorry I feel for that guy. He gave up a lot to be on the show and had to go home due to something completely beyond his control. I wish him the best of luck in the future and hopefully he gets another chance soon. They didn’t show where he was in the house saying goodbye to everyone. He was crying a lot, understandably, and it was obvious that he really wanted to stay. Whether he is an exciting fighter or not, he beat a very game fighter in Reggie Orr to get on the show and deserved to be there.
So in comes Pat Schultz. I never would have expected them to bring him back. I really thought they would bring back Reggie Orr. In my opinion, he is the man that deserved to be back, but maybe he was injured or something. I don’t know. In any case, Pat Schultz is a gamer with very good standup and is a threat in the tournament. He was very happy to be back and was ready for another chance, but now he has something to prove and nothing to lose. Not a bad scenario for him really.
So after media day (which was not shown on TV) and getting our first look inside the house, it was time for team picks. I personally didn’t care which team I was on, but if I had to choose I would have chosen Forrest and I was glad that I got picked on that team along with my teammate Luke Zackrich.
The reason I would have chosen Forrest simply comes down to work ethic. I didn’t know Rampage personally so at the time I could only go by hearsay and I had always heard that Rampage doesn’t like training and has people wake him up and take him to practice, whereas Forrest is the first guy in the gym and last guy out, and that he is one of the hardest workers in the gym, just like myself.
I don’t even know at all if any of this is true, like I said I was only making my preference via hearsay. So anyway, I was happy to be on Team Forrest. After all the picks were done it was pretty obvious that Rampage was looking more for wrestlers and Forrest was looking more for hard workers and well-rounded guys. We did get one really good wrestler in Jesse Taylor though. Luke, my teammate back home, was the last pick. It was pretty obvious from his facial expression that he was a little embarrassed and now he had something to prove.
There were some remarks about him being the “weak link” on our team, but I think if they knew Luke better they would not have thought this. He probably had the best record on the show (9-1) and definitely had some of the most technical standup out of everyone.
When it came time to make the picks we only had two guys to choose from because it had to be a fighter that only fought one round due to NSAC guidelines that said for every round you had to have so many days rest. Mike Dolce was one and I think CB (Dollaway) was the other one.
Jesse really wanted to fight first and it made sense for him to fight Dolce because Dolce is definitely one of Rampage’s better guys and the best way to beat Dolce is by grinding him out with a wrestler. After talking to Dolce in the house I heard that he had wrestled Division 1 in college and I began to think that maybe J.T. wasn’t the best guy to fight him.
After training a little bit with J.T. though I had confidence that he can beat just about anyone. He works as hard as anyone I have ever seen in the gym and is solid everywhere.
Finally it is fight day. J.T. versus Dolce. When Dolce stepped into the Octagon he looked as intense as I have ever seen a fighter. He screamed loudly when he walked in, he had an evil smile on his face and had fire in his eyes. I honestly thought he would scare J.T. into a loss. J.T. worked his game plan to perfection and ground out Dolce until he opened up a rear naked choke.
Dolce had his opportunities but wasn’t able to capitalize. The end result was a win for Team Forrest and we retained control of the next fight pick. I honestly think Dolce would have been a bad match up a lot of the guys on our team so it was good to have him out first. Dolce is the kind of guy that can end a fight quickly and is a tough fight for anyone. Truth be told, had he been a little more relaxed and focused on game plan, he may have given J.T. a better fight or even won. Who knows. That is what makes this sport so exciting. It doesn’t take much to lose, but it takes everything to win.
If you guys have any questions or remarks about the episode feel free to hit me up on myspace at myspace.com/live2fight_fight2live. Also make sure you check out my website (still being finished but is now accessible) at the Immortal.tv and mattbrown-mma.com. For the best in designer clothing check out my sponsor’s myspace, Denim Addiction, on my top friends. Also I will be doing the MMAWeekly live radio show every Monday at 930 pm, tune in to here more of my thoughts on each weeks episode. Thanks for reading!!