Back at the training center, Bisping is shown training full speed and with high intensity with his fighters. Bisping explains that most of his fighters have significant experience on the U.K. circuit, as he briefly introduces his TUF coaches, who also happen to be his real coaches outside of the show.
Coach Bisping believes he has a great team that will simply outwork their U.S. counterparts, and questions just how hard Team U.S. is preparing for the competition, saying, “I have no idea how hard team Henderson is training, Team U.S., whatever you want to call them, I don’t know how hard they are training, and to be honest, I don’t really care.”
As Dan Henderson walks into the training center, Bisping adds, “I know one thing, they ain’t training harder than us, I don’t think it’s possible to train much harder than… as hard as I’m training these guys.”
Bisping starts off right where he left off from Episode 3, trash talking to various team members of Team U.S. Coach Henderson tells his guys to use the talk as motivation, and explains that, “I’ll have my chance to shut his mouth with my fist.”
Henderson leads his guys through their training session, and introduces his assistant coaches, boxing coach Gustavo Pugliese, jiu jitsu coach Ricardo Feliciano, muay thai coach Cyrille Diabate, and long time training partner heath Sims.
Back at the training center, with Dan Henderson controlling the first fight match up as a result of Team U.S. winning the coin toss from episode 3. Henderson chooses Mark Miller to represent team U.S., and chooses fellow welterweight Nick Osipczak from Team U.K. as his opponent.
Bisping explains his late arrival to the show due to visa and paperwork issues, and is seen studying the Team U.S. fights to breakdown Miller’s strengths and weaknesses. After the video cram session, Bisping believes that Miller is “quite one dimensional”, and believes that Osipczak will do very well in the fight.
Nick Osipczak enlightens the casual MMA fans out there that his kung fu background got his ass kicked when he stepped into an MMA gym. After that experience, Osipczak focused on becoming well rounded in his MMA game.
Back to the house, and the U.S. prankster of this season is turning out to be Damarques Johnson. He happens upon a Team U.K. shirt, and uses a bleach pen to post his forecast of the first fight of the season between the two teams, tagging the tee with a “USA 1” in bold letters.
It’s now time for the official weigh ins for both fighters, and the U.K. fighters believe that Nick Osipczak’s first fight as a southpaw will give him an advantage over Miller when they step into the Octagon. Both fighters make weight, and it’s time to see who draws blood first in episode 9.
Team U.K. arrives back at the house, and finds the tee shirt that Damarques Johnson customized, and gets a good laugh at the season’s first prank.
Back at the training center, Mark Miller enlightens us about his bizarre fight nickname, “The Meat Missile”, which he gave himself while having breakfast with his grandmother. I can only imagine what some of his entrance tee shirts will look like if he is successful in the UFC.
Some of the U.K. fighters apparently leave some wrestling shoes behind and the training center, which were tagged with more graffiti showing American superiority in the competition, at least in Johnson’s mind.
We are quickly informed by the british fighters that in fact, they are not wrestling shoes, but are wrestling boots. Just goes to show how much I know…
Bisping and his guys discuss the pranks, although I had to rewind the DVR several times to try to discern exactly what was said. I did understand Bisping saying, “Don’t make a dick out of yourselves on TV,” which is always good advice to follow.
We get the obligatory thoughts from each of the fighters prior to their bout, with Miller throwing out a nice tongue twister that he will be “fist fighting for fun.” Say that 20 times really fast.
Nick Osipczak vs. Mark Miller
Round 1 – Miller comes in aggresive behind his left hand, but is taken down from the clinch by Osipczak who used his overhook to get the fight to the ground.
With Osipczak on top, Miller goes for an arm in an attempt for a kimura, and ends up sweeping Osipczak. A scramble ensues with Miller gaining top position and ending up in Osipczak’s guard. Osipczak is using his elbows from the bottom nicely, and sweeps Miller, with both fighters scrambling for superior position again.
Back to the feet and Osipczak utilizes the clinch and lands some strong knees, before getting dropped by a three punch combo. Miller ends up on his back and works for a guillotine before going for the arm again, looking for the kimura.
They work back to their feet and exchange with Miller just missing with a huge uppercut. Nice dirty boxing from the clinch, with Miller landing uppercuts between Osipczak’s hands. Osipczak changes levels nicely and gets a strong take down, with Miller breathing heavily out of his mouth. Miller goes for an arm bar but it’s loose, and Osipczak stands and gets Miller in a tight guillotine and pulls guard.
Miller slips out of it, reverses position, and is delivering some nice GNP from the top, with 10 seconds to go in the round. Back to the feet, and Osipczak earns another take down at the bell.
Round 2 – Miller starts the round with a 1,2 combo and Osipczak’s corner is screaming for him to keep his hands up. Miller comes forward, and as Osipczak changes levels, Miller goes for the guillotine again and ends up on his back, looking for the finish.
Osipczak works out of the choke, lands some nice elbows, and in the process passes Miller’s guard ending up in side mount. Miller is staying active and manages to get half guard re-established, and takes Osipczak’s neck again going for the guillotine.
Miller uses the over hook on his left side and head control to sweep Osipczak, and is now in his full guard. Herb Dean calls for the fighters to stay busy and to get to work or he’ll stand them up. Miller is resting in Osipczak’s guard, and almost gets caught in a triangle, but manages to free himself.
He manages to retain top position on Osipczak, and is now back in full guard again. A lull in the action causes Dean to stand them up. As the fighters square up, Osipczak throws a head kick from the outside that lands flush to the face of Miller, ending the fight instantly.
It’s a dramatic end to a back and forth fight that was one of the better bouts that fans and viewers have been treated to on The Ultimate Fighter series.
Team U.K. strikes first taking an early 1-0 lead in the competition.