Wanderlei Silva’s team looks for second straight after starting 0-5
“The Ultimate Fighter Brazil” was back Sunday night with a broadcast streamed on TUF.tv – the season’s eighth episode. HeavyMMA has a complete episode recap here, including the seventh fight of the season.
Episode 8 Recap
After starting the season with five straight losses, Wanderlei Silva‘s team finally picked up its first victory when Rony Jason beat good friend Gaspar. But Vitor Belfort having the friends fight didn’t sit well with Silva and tensions boiled over between the two coaches.
We start with a fight announcement. Silva says he wants to correct a misunderstanding. He brings back up the friends fighting and asks what that adds to the sport when there was a different matchup that could be made to avoid it as long as possible. The two argue in front of the teams. Belfort says they train in different gyms now, so what’s the big deal? Belfort says by coming here, they knew they’d have to eventually fight if they wanted to move on. Finally, Belfort announces the fight. From his team, he takes middleweight Francisco “Tuba” Massaranduba. And from Belfort’s team, Thiago Bodao.
We hit up training sessions and get the typical confessionals from the fighters. Bodao’s story includes surviving cancer as a kid – while his brother was down the hall at the hospital with leukemia. He was even told by a doctor, at the age of 9, that he couldn’t be involved in sports because he wouldn’t’ be able to use the shoulder his cancer was in. But obviously he beat that theory back. He speaks of his wife saying she would provide for them while Bodao pursues his dream of being a fighter. He says he made a promise to his wife that if he made it to the finals, they would have a baby. Talk about pressure!
Silva talks about Massaranduba being well-liked by everyone on the team. In his confessional, he talks about his childhood working on a farm. He lives with his brothers, alternating between homes to allow him to change his routine. His father always watches his fights on TV with his friends, but his mom won’t watch. He says he’s not here to talk about hardships, but he’s here to win.
Back at the house, Gaspar pokes some fun at Silva, mimicking him. And, as we’ve become used to, he annoys quite a few people in the room who are trying to sleep. It’s been the story of the season inside the TUF house. We transition to training sessions for each team, then finally to the official weigh-in. Massaranduba is first up, and former WEC boss Reed Harris is there to supervise. Both guys are on their marks, with Massaranduba coming in at 184 pounds and Bodao at 185.
Before the fight, both fighters say they’ve got nothing against each other – in fact, they rather like each other, it seems. But it’s business, and they’ll have to fight. Bodao says they’re the two calmest guys in the house, but the two most aggressive in the cage. Finally, we’re ready for the fight.
Francisco Massaranduba (10-1) vs. Thiago Bodao (8-1)
Round 1: Outside leg kick from Bodao is followed by one toward the body. Massaranduba stalks from the middle. Another couple of kicks from Bodao. And finally a left from Massaranduba. Bodao keeps working the kicks, and Massaranduba keeps stalking. Ninety seconds in, we get the first decent exchange between the two, and that seems to start things down that path. The two trade before Massaranduba clinches things up along the cage. He works for a takedown, but Bodao is defending nicely and turns things around and puts Massaranduba’s back on the fence. Then he briefly gets the fight to the canvas, but the two pop right back up. They stay clinched, looking for knees. Not a ton of action, though, and Mario Yamasaki splits them up with 30 seconds left in the round. It’s an interesting round to score, but HeavyMMA will go with Bodao in a close 10-9.
Round 2: High kick from Bodao, then an outside leg kick that forces Massaranduba to come forward with some big strikes. He lands a decent shot and Bodao falls back into guard. Massaranduba starts working ground and pound with elbows and fists when he can. But Bodao pushes out and gets back to his feet. He lands a knee, then another and looks for a takedown of his own. Massaranduba looks to push for a takedown, but Bodao sprawls out of it. Bodao has Massaranduba against the fence and is looking for knees. Both fighters appear to be tired. Bodao gets a trip takedown and winds up on top looking to mount. With 90 seconds left, it’s a bad position for Massaranduba. Bodao is looking for ground and pound opportunities, but isn’t doing a ton with the position. Finally he starts to mount a little more offense. Massaranduba tries to get up and makes it to a knee, but Bodao keeps him on the canvas and is smothering him out of any chance of offense. It’s a pretty clear 10-9 round for Bodao on the HeavyMMA card.
It looks like we’re going to a third round, though. Bodao comes out, but Massaranduba does not. His coaches are getting him off the chair and it looks like Massaranduba can barely stand. He drops to the canvas. Yamasaki tells him to get up, and Bodao encourages him to get up and think about his family. But Massaranduba cannot and Yamasaki calls it.
Result: Bodao def. Massaranduba, TKO (retirement), 5:00 Round 2