By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief
"It's to the point where this season is an embarrassment."
Starting with the fallout from last week's fight, Dana White began TUF 16's eighth episode with a rant about the poor fights from the season.
"The way that the judging has been this season, you should be doing everything you can possibly do to win every second of every f***ing round," the UFC President said. "It's only two rounds. This isn't some five round title fight, it's not even a three round fight."
And here's where Roy Nelson and Dana White differ in their philosophies of TUF. It's what Nelson used to get through the heavyweight season, trying simply to get to the finals, not entertain through the show. He thinks they need to just win their fights and get to the finals to get into the UFC, but Dana has other ideas.
He made an unannounced appearance in the house, letting everyone know they're not a lock to make it onto the Finale card just because they're on TUF. He told them they need to have exciting fights because the season has been sub-par, and he hoped the talk would put the fear of god in them all.
What his talk did accomplish was bringing out the liquor in full force, with Michael Hill drowning his disappointment over last week's fight into the bottle. There's no way that could possibly be a bad idea, right? Then it was Julian Lane taking things further. I'm not sure they caught the fact that Dana wanted the fights IN the cage.
TUF turned into the Real World Challenge house for the next several segments, with arguments, yelling, drunken fools throwing punches at walls, Julian slamming his head against a door and going full on crazy. Yep, this season's definitely an embarrassment. As Jon Manley put it, "if you want to go home, then go home."
Mike Ricci added further, saying he's ashamed to be associated with the sport when it comes to guys like that. Then Matt Secor stood in the back with a big smile on his face and said it made his night.
We get the typical training segments before transitioning to this year's coaches challenge. This year we get track and field, with Carwin and Nelson competing in five different events. $20,000 to the winning coach, $1,500 to each of the members of that coaches team.
Carwin rolled through the shot put, javelin, and discus, then, predictably, won the long jump as well. The wins gave Carwin a 12 meter advantage in the 400m run. Again, predictably, Carwin easily won the race. Nelson's not the epitome of "athletic." Though Nelson's team and several from Carwin's commented on Nelson quitting at the tail end of the race, Nelson shrugged it off and said Carwin can beat him in all those little events, but he won't beat him in a fight.
Next up was the pre-fight prep and final comments from Jon Manley and James Chaney. To the fight itself. Manley got the best of some early exchanges before Chaney clinched and pulled guard. Chaney locked up a triangle choke, but as he was going for it Manley lifted him up and drove him to the cage. Chaney slowly dragged it back down as he tried to tighten the hold. Manley turned over, putting a knee on Chaney and landing punches, and he eventually broke free. Getting mount after the scramble, he went for a neck cranking guillotine from the top and finally forced the tap.
It could have ended as just the best fight of the season, but in what just adds to the embarrassment that has come from this final Friday night version of the show, it turns out Chaney bit Manley in the side while in the choke in a desperation attempt to break free from the hold. You can't make this up. Manley initially wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt, but sure enough, here's what Chaney himself said:
"No, I bit him, I bit him on purpose. I wanted to find a way out of there. I thought maybe it'd loosen up. On the other hand, maybe I'm a kind of a piece of s***, but I did not want to lose that fight. This is something I take pretty serious, it's really all I got. It's f***ed up, it was a last resort, and it didn't work."
"Live and learn, I guess."