Ryan McGillivray’s The Ultimate Fighter 13 Blog – Episode 3
And another episode down, one with a little added interest for myself. It was extremely hard not to tell everyone that I was fighting on this episode. Hopefully everyone got a chance to see it and enjoyed the episode.
Tonight’s show started around Brock’s “Chicken Salad” comment. Well the chicken salad is the good part, but I didn’t what to print the negative side. If I was on his team I would feel exactly the same as his team did. I understand I haven’t made it anywhere in my career yet compared to his, however I am very proud of how far I have come. I think a comment like that really cheapened all that his team had gone through individually to be where they are now. I think Brock meant “sort of” positive things by this comment but failed to really reach his team. But if you’re on team Lesner have to be prepared for stuff like that. They have great coaches with Brock, Marty, and Eric but to be fair Brock is a little “rough around the edges” I would say.
Then we get to meet our new teammate on Team Dos Santos, Justin “Eddy” Edwards. Right away he seemed to fit in, as you see in the first scene with our whole team in the locker room laughing. I personally clicked well with Eddy and was very happy to have him on our team. In and out of the gym he was a great guy and we had a lot of fun. He was known for some low blows in training (ha-ha), but other than that couldn’t have fit in better.
It has been no secret that Lew and Junior have had a few issues in regards to their coaching styles. For me I am a big fan of both styles and valued them both in different ways. I think it is important to have that dynamic especially when you have so many different fighters who respond to different coaching styles. Lew did try to do things his own way sometimes and I see that more from watching the show but I do not look at it negatively. Obviously, Junior is the head coach so it is a bit sensitive to be running your own direction. BUT for those who do not know Lew it is easy to see it as all negative. He is a very passionate guy and unreal competitively which is what made him push so hard. Perhaps sometimes too hard but his heart was in the right place. Always trying to push us to be the best and reach our potential. It is a very delicate process in a format like the show. You need to balance a very thin line of overtraining and risking injury and undertraining so that the guys are not ready to fight. As long as people keep that in mind and know that all of our coaches in their own way were HUGE assets then the show has represented them well.
For the first time, I saw and heard the rumors about Cope being a bit of a double agent. He did spend a lot of time with our team and trying to dig for information. One thing I can say is he is not very sneaky, as we knew what he was doing from day one. I think that Team Lesnar had a good point in suspecting Chris of playing both sides and had good reason. In the end, he was not good enough at it to play a factor though. His attempt at mind games played a very small factor in the house and turned into more of a comedy for Team Dos Santos.
When Junior is sitting on the mats talking to us and I make my comment “I am Canadian, we’re always nice”. You can see that I am icing my knees, though they don’t cover what had happened. I have had some knee issues in the past that were all healthy going into the house. Unfortunately, on the first couple days, I tweaked my right knee just a little bit and was taping it. The downside to that was that I favored it onto my left knee which is my bad one. Because of that, I ended up tearing my meniscus again in my left knee a few days before my fight with Len. That really hurt my training and was something that was a challenge to overcome.
It was awesome having the coaches come over and help me cut the last few pounds in the bath at our house. We have such an amazing coaching staff and family feel to our team. It was hilarious they said they would not help me unless I put on the tiny Tapout ginch that you saw me in the bath wearing. We had a good laugh about that and made the whole process a lot more light-hearted.
Now to the fight. I was feeling pretty good going in, calm, confident and focused. I got caught early in the first with a left hook and got dropped hard. The punch ended up giving me a concussion and I was in autopilot for a good minute. I came back to my senses as soon as you see me get my guard back. I was happy to stay on the ground as I am confident in my ground game though Len decided he would rather stand. Shortly after we stood back up, I landed a few more good shots followed by a left hook of my own which dropped Len. I made the mistake of jumping in his guard as I got a little anxious to finish the fight. We were on the ground for a little bit until Len secured an arm bar. I lost my balance which put me on my back and locked the arm bar in very tight. My elbow got temporarily dislocated which took all of the pain away and enabled me to get out of it. As soon as I put my hand back down, it popped back in. I tried securing a crucifix but he escaped very quickly. I was able to lock in my favorite submission in a gator roll near the end of the round. It was on very tight and I heard him gurgling but ran out of time. This round was very close with a knock down each and a submission attempt each. I felt I had the better of the stand up and escaped his submission where he was saved by the bell. With that in mind, it was very close but I thought I edged out the first round.
The second round had less obvious factors for points. We had a lot of good exchanges and were mostly standing up. He was the aggressor but could not find his range missing with the majority of his shots. Even though I threw less, I landed more effective strikes in this round. I was also able to secure a take down which is big points. In my opinion, with the take down and the flurry at the end of the round, I thought I had both rounds. Keeping in mind judging can be unpredictable I was ready for a third. When they said it was over I thought I had it in the bag. Two of the judges agreed with me and I won a majority decision after the second round.
I was a little emotional after the fight for a few reasons. I fought with my heart and soul to win that fight and left nothing out there. Most of all having my daughter in my mind just broke me down. I can get punched, kicked, beaten and keep pushing forward but my little girl has something over me. I am wrapped around her finger and she just gets to me. We, as a team, sang her a happy Birthday the next day around a pie with two candles lit to celebrate her second birthday. That was an amazing moment for me and really brought me closer with my team.
I hope everyone enjoyed the fight and saw that Len and I left everything in the cage that night.
Follow Ryan McGillivray on Twitter @KidMcGillivray