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The Ultimate Fighter 16 episode 3 recap: Rivera bests Alvey by majority decision

Episode two begins with the obligatory recap of the previous episode which saw Team Carwin strike first as Neil Magny bested Team Nelson’s jiu-jitsu ace Cameron Diffley by decision.

With the win, Coach Carwin believes that controlling the fight pick will be crucial to ensure that his team continues to get the most favorable match-ups as the competition advances.

In the Team Nelson locker room, Cameron Diffley profusely apologizes to his team for a lackluster showing. Coach Nelson admits that losing control isn’t the best situation but believes that it may just “light a fire” in his guys as any one of them could be chosen at any time for the next fight.

The discussion as to who is next spills over to the fighter house. Matt Secor is again in the center of the trash talk as he jabs at Colton Smith about his looks. Smith is not one to let the talk go unanswered, telling Secor that he is better in every aspect of MMA, and that he cannot wait to silence Secor in the octagon.

Nic Herron-Webb disturbs the other fighters in the house with his insomnia issues which seem to have an intentionally targeted purpose. Herron-Webb commences to play pool late into the night, banging balls around and whistling much to the disdain of his roommates.

Most of the fighters, including Mike Ricci, believe that Herron-Webb is acting out due to nerves and point out that he has been getting handled during training. The next morning, the whistling continues, and Secor again is involved in the center of the action, having strong words for Herron-Webb and his place in the competition.

At the training center, the wait is over. Coach Carwin congratulates Neil Magny on his win and then proceeds to select Joey Rivera of Team Nelson to face Sam Alvey of Team Carwin. Dana White believes that Alvey has the edge based on his quick knockout to get into the house and believes that a shaky performance by Rivera may forecast a “devastating” finish to the bout.

In the locker room, Herron-Webb’s own teammates confront him about his late night antics. Michael Hill tries to explain that the strategy to irritate the other team affects Team Nelson just as much. Julian Lane crushes the confrontation with a call to get together to rally and cheer on Joey Rivera.

Rivera tells the viewers that he is a gym owner in Tucson, Arizona and that training is his life. Rivera goes on to explain that fighting has been a part of his life since he was a child, where at times he fought his mother’s boyfriends, and believes that his experiences is what brought him to where he is today.

Coach Nelson believes that Rivera will win if he can constantly apply pressure and put Alvey on his back. Rivera thinks that his unorthodox style will make the difference in him advancing in the competition.

Sam Alvey touts himself as a Wisconsin born “hunter and fisher” from Team Quest, all while he keeps his trademark smile in full form. Assistant coach Trevor Wittman is impressed with the high-level striking of Alvey, and Coach Carwin sees the key to the fight being in Alvey’s ability to mix up his strikes while avoiding the takedown.

“Smilin” Sam Alvey is the next victim in the prank war at the house. He seems an unlikely target considering his sunny disposition. As his mattress is found floating in the pool, his teammate Igor Araujo is more upset than Alvey himself. Alvey smiles off the prank and hits the couch for a night of sleep.

Weigh-ins can turn into fashion shows at times on this show, and this episode is no different. Rivera weighs in with pink underwear, but it is Alvey that steals the show with a really disturbing black leather cod piece that causes him to weigh in overweight. After dropping the contraption, Alvey make s weight as expected.

Back at the house, Joey Rivera talks about his pre-fight ritual of sex and how it relates to his spiritual energy. That topic seems to always come up prior to athletic competitions. Alvey on the other hand talks about how excited he is just for the opportunity to impress Mr. White and how he hopes to prove that he belongs in the UFC.

Team Carwin – Sam Alvey vs. Team Nelson – Joey Rivera

Round 1 – Rivera immediately takes the center of the cage to start. He fires off a head kick right out of the gate. Again. Alvey counters but misses. Rivera to the body with a kick. He then changes levels and puts Alvey on the mat. Good start for Rivera. Alvey uses the cage to stand but leaves to much space allowing Rivera to take his back. Alvey stays standing while defending the rear naked choke attempt. Rivera gives it up but keeps the pressure on pinning Alvey into the cage. He again drops and secures the hips of Alvey, slamming him to the mat. Alvey back up again but he’s struggling to create any type of space to get his offense on track. In fact Rivera has an arm triangle and is applying pressure while standing. He again gives up the submission attempt but he’s staying really active. Alvey finally gets his back off the cage, but Rivera uses an overhook to work him back to the mat, again locking up a guillotine on the way down. Alvey fights off the sub as they make their way back to the feet. Rivera keeps the neck locked up and again they hit the mat. He’s still looking for the finish with the guillotine. He’s been squeezing for awhile and may burn his arms out. Rivera finally gives it up and has Alvey on top of him with just under a minute to go. Rivera quickly transitions to a triangle but can’t lock it up. Alvey stands over him and lands a couple of kicks to the legs. He then dives in with a double-hammerfist strike but time has run out. PMN scores the first round for Rivera easily, 10-9.

Round 2 – Alvey looks tired from defending all of those submission attempts in the first frame. He pumps his jab but there isn’t much behind it. Rivera is going right back to his kicks. To the body, inside leg kick. Nice jab from Alvey connects. He then drives in for a takedown. Rivera easily avoids the first attempt but is pressed on the cage. Knees from Alvey inside. Rivera again has the neck of Alvey. More knees to the thighs by Alvey. Alvey snatches his hips out from the cage but still can’t get the fight to the mat. They break. Stiff jab from Alvey. Rivera counters with a right and a kick. Alvey is mostly one-and-done. He needs to string some combinations together. Instead, he closes and clinches. Alvey still fighting for a takedown. Rivera again grabs the neck for a guillotine. So far he’s been able to use the choke to control Alvey. Referee Herb Dean has seen enough and separates them. Alvey goes to his jab again. Rivera connects with a huge kick to the head that staggers Alvey. Rivera follows up with another takedown. He’s running away with the fight if he continues like this. Alvey stands but has Rivera plastered on him. Less than a minute to go. Alvey turns Rivera and puts his back on the cage and is looking for a late takedown. He gets it but it may not be enough. PMN scores that round, and the fight overall to Rivera.

OFFICIAL RESULT: Joey Rivera defeats Sam Alvey by majority decision (19-19, 20-18,20-18).

Despite losing the fight, Sam Alvey promises to be the best he can to help his team for the next five weeks. Team Carwin stresses that the team mentality is crucial as the competition moves on.

Team Nelson celebrates Rivera’s win in the locker room and Coach Nelson tells the team that the success was due to Rivera’s effort and his will to listen to his coaches during the fight.

Keep it locked here at ProMMAnow.com for full coverage of the The Ultimate Fighter 16 each week.

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