The Ultimate Fighter 14 – episode 3 recap: Beware of the “Death Leprechauns”

“Mayhem” kicks off the episode by showing his stellar driving skills as he screeches into the training center parking lot.

Coach Miller shows up for the training session with an armful of foam rollers, and then tells the team that the session will start with the “First rule of the Octagon: Defend yourselves at all times.”

He grabs a roller and starts beating on his team, and within seconds, the whole team breaks out in the shenanigans, beating each other with the foam rollers.

Outside in the parking lot, Coach Bisping’s assistant coaches makes good on his promise to step up their prank game, showing off some NASCAR-esque skills, taking all of “Mayhem’s” tires off of his car. Bisping feels that the prank is appropriate considering “Mayhem’s” tire prank in episode 2.

“I thought that if he likes tires so much, why not give him four more,” Bisping asked.

“Mayhem” got a kick out of the prank, giving it up to Bisping for his cleverness.

After a quick handshake between the coaches regarding the prank, it’s time for a Team Bisping training session.

Coach Bisping stresses to his team that the focus needs to be on technical sparring, and that nobody should be going more than 60%.

It’s apparent right off the bat that guys are going a little too hard, and before long, the session gets out of control.

Akira Corassani is the first guy to show his frustration, and as Coach Bisping talks to him, Diego Brandao and Marcus Brimage are going at it full force. Within seconds, their sparring escalates into a war of words.

Diego takes it over the top when he blurts out that he would kill Marcus.

“I’m from Alabama… I’m not versed in too many other languages besides ebonics and redneck,” Brimage replied. “But…. I’m going to kill you?”

Coach Bisping quickly defuses the situation, comparing Brandao to himself while he was on the Ultimate Fighter.

Back at the house, the guys talk about the craziness of Akira Corassani who is turning into the ultimate prankster, taking full on pool shots to the testicles on the pool table.

Akira waits for everybody to go to bed before continuing his pranks. He starts off with putting pistachios, rice, and marshmallows in the gloves of the other fighters.

Akira lets viewers know that Dustin Neace has three testicles, so what better way to honor him than by putting the three ball from the pool table into his glove?

At the training center, it’s time for the first bantamweight fight announcement.

Coach Miller selects his team’s “executioner” to be Johnny Bedford. He then goes on to select Josh Ferguson from Team Bisping. Ferguson is prepared for the match, somehow knowing that he would be selected, and busts out a “F*** you Bedford” sign. The talk between the too kicks off quickly as they face off. This looks like it’s going to be a hell of a fight.

Training starts off with Team Miller finding birdseed, rice, and billiard balls in their gloves. Everybody immediately knows that Akira is the man responsible, and even Dustin Neace has a laugh about the three ball.

“I was lucky enough to have three testicles, and Akira played a little prank on me,”  Neace said. “But I’m not here to have pranks, I’m here to fight.”

Bedford is fighting off an injury to his hand, but Coach Miller is not overly concerned.

“Fighting to get in the house, he kind of injured it,” Miller said. “But, that being said, he is a tough son of a [expletive].”

Back at the house, Akira goes to the old “water on the door” prank, setting it up for the first person from Team Miller to fall prey to.

At the team Bisping training session, Coach Bisping feels good about Ferguson’s chances against Bedford.

“I think Josh is being underestimated because of his size,” Bisping said. “In terms of skills, he’s right up there.”

Ferguson explains that being underestimated his entire life is nothing new for him.

“I grew up being an underdog my whole entire life,” Ferguson said. “I grew up in a family of seven kids, so I’m used to fighting for everything I’ve ever [expletive] had.”

As Team Miller gets back to the house, Akira’s prank is set in motion as the water container falls and explodes on the floor. Bedford insists that the pranks don’t bother him at all, but Dustin Neace feels differently.

“Akira’s been messing with me for a few days, and I’m a sleeping bull,” Neace said. “You keep jabbing me, you keep jabbing me, and eventually I’m going to attack.”

Neace heads over to the kitchen and retrieves a container of rice, spilling and spreading it all over Akira’s bed. Neace finished it off with a note to let him know who was responsible.

Akira confronts Dustin in the room, and after some words, the stage is set for a showdown between the two. Both fighters insist that they will pick each other when the opportunity presents itself.

Later in the night, the audience is introduced to the “Death Leprechauns.” The squad consists of Team Miller’s John Dodson, Team Bisping’s Louis Gaudinot, and Team Bisping’s Josh Ferguson. Gauidinot confesses that Dodson, although from Team Miller, is the one that tipped Team Bisping off that Ferguson would be the fight pick.

Dodson takes the team betrayal a step further, letting Ferguson know that Bedford has a hand injury. It is apparent that Team Miller has a mole.

“Rampage” would have sniffed that mole out immediately!

At the weigh-ins Coach Bisping has something to say, laughing and joking about Bedford’s “skinny legs,” and then remarks about the hurt hand, before digging into “Mayhem.”

Enough of the formalities, it’s time to fight.

Bantamweight Bout

Team Miller – Johnny Bedford vs. Team Bisping – Josh Ferguson

Round 1 – Touch of gloves. Beford ducks a jab just before they exchange. Josh gets the better of the exchange with his three-punch combo. Johnny comes forward, fakes a kick, then catches a Josh kick, and clinches. He works Josh to the mat, and has him pressed on the cage. Johnny delivers a sharp, short elbow. He then postures in the guard of Josh and lands three elbows from the top, then a couple of right hands to the body. He backs out and as Josh stands, he fires off a head kick that misses. Josh comes forward with a nice leaping left hook, followed by a right hand. Josh circles away, as Johnny stalks him. Double jab from Johnny. Josh walks into a left hand. Johnny puts together a nice punch-kick combination then clinhes. Nice knee, and another from Johnny. To the body now, then another knee, and another. He’s punishing Josh in the clinch. Josh disengages and then lands a nice right hook. Johnny gets the take down and lands some nice alternating strikes from the top. Josh kicks him off but gives up side control in the process. Johnny is looking to step over the head of Josh, but he’s blocked. Johnny is looking to get an arm isolated. He gets the left arm of Josh and goes for the armbar, but Josh turns into the submission and ends up on top. They scramble to their feet and Josh has the neck of Johnny with less than a minute to go. Johnny works free and they separate. Josh lands first. Kick from Josh. Jab Josh. Johnny ducks the next jab and takes him back to the mat. First round goes to Johnny Bedford.

Round 2 – Jab Josh. One-two combo from Johnny. Nice exchange. Both guys are throwing much tighter punches to start. Josh is really using his jab nicely, but then fires a looping overhand right. Johnny ducks in and goes to the body, then misses a head kick. Back to the body from Johnny. Both guys connect with a jab, but Johnny is clearly looking to close in for a take down. He gets inside, and gets the trip take down. Josh is controlling the posture of Johnny so far. Johnny breaks free for an isolated strike, but so far hasn’t done much on top. Josh’s corner is calling for him to get off of his back. Johnny passes to side mount. Bisping calls for Josh to get off the flat of his back and get to his side. Josh retains half guard, but Johnny is controlling the position. He postures for a big elbow, but leaves space. Josh gets to his feet, then flies in with a flying knee. Johnny catches him and slams him and is back in side control. Short, grinding, elbows from Johnny. Less than a minute to go. Josh has to get off of his back. Johnny grabs an arm then delivers a couple of elbows. He ends the round on top, landing some nice strikes. Round and fight goes to Johnny.

Official Result: Johnny Bedford def. Josh Ferguson by unanimous decision.

With the victory, Team Miller moves to 2-0 on the season.

Coach Bisping is not at all pleased, and starts in on “Mayhem” right after the fight. Coach Miller shakes it off, feeling great about the early dominance of his team.

“Continue to talk, we’re going to keep winning fights,” Miller exclaimed.

We’ll see you next week guys. Also, be sure to check out Team Miller featherweight Steven Siler’s blog for this week, Steven Siler’s TUF 14 blog – episode 3, as he shares his inside perspective on everything that went down.

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