Posts Tagged ‘John Cofer’
As the seventh episode of “The Ultimate Fighter: Live” begins, we watch some highlights from the previous week’s episode, in which Team Faber’s Joe Proctor forced Team Cruz’s Chris Tickle to tap via rear-naked choke submission.
Heading into tonight’s episode, Team Faber has captured three straight wins to lead the show over the two wins of Team Cruz. The sixth live fight selected for tonight’s show is a bout between John Cofer of Team Faber against Team Cruz’ Vinc Pichel.
Cruz starts out the show by giving last week’s loser, Tickle, some tough love. Emphasizing the fact that this was a fight that he should not have lost, Cruz stated that the only reason that Tickle lost was because he wasn’t listening to what the coaches had to say during the fight. Cruz put down a heavy scolding on Tickle that showed his true frustrations about fighters not listening, and losing to his nemesis, Faber.
Faber and members of his team heard what was happening in Team Cruz’ post-fight meeting and extended congratulations to Tickle for a good fight. The resulting argument between the two coaches is intense, with Cruz calling Faber “irrelevant.”
Back at the house, the effects of the solitude start to take a hold of the fighters, especially Andy Ogle. Both mentally and physically, Ogle was struggling and it carries over to the training session where Faber took notice and gave him the rest of the day off to rest and get back to normal.
At Team Cruz’ practice their main focus was on Pichel and preparing him for the next bout. The game plan set forth was to defend all takedown attempts by Cofer and to finish him on the feet with a knockout. Pressure also hits Team Cruz Sam Sicilia, as he is trying to live up to the hype of being the No. 2 pick, but feels like he isn’t. Cruz took Sicilia aside and told him that pick has nothing to do with the fights and he should concentrate on learning.
During the Team Faber training session they had a strict game plan set for Cofer. Knowing that Pichel is weak within the realm of wrestling and has an advantage with striking, Cofer is to use his wrestling pedigree to his full advantage. Faber prepared his fighter for the flashy strikes to come from the bigger Pichel with strategic counters and takedowns.
Once again, the head of Ogle is starting to run wild and the loyalty of Mike Chiesa to his team came into question. Both teams know of “Team Purple” that was developed between Chiesa and Sicilia, but the information they share comes in to question by the British fighter. Ogle approached Chiesa about the situation and was reassured that his loyalty to the team is strong and to not worry.
At the weigh-ins, Pichel steps up first and registers at 154-pounds, while Cofer shows up at 156-pounds. After the weigh-ins are complete UFC president, Dana White, held the fighters back to give some words of encouragement, knowing the show is at the point where it is starting to have an effect on them.
“Whether you win this thing or don’t,” said White. “You’ll be a better fighter, a better man, a better person and it will pay off in the end.”
To start the bout, both fighters come out tentative with Pichel chasing Cofer around the Octagon, missing his attempts with punches and head kicks. Midway through the round, Cofer has yet to attempt a take down, but has become comfortable on his feet and is starting to pick apart Pichel.
Meeting in the middle of the cage, they continue where they left off, but Cofer managed to land a left hand that almost put Pichel to the mat. However, flipping the switch, Pichel went for the takedown and slammed Cofer into the canvas. Team Cruz’ Pichel, remained in a reverse mounted position to end the round, sending the bout to a sudden death third round.
Pichel wastes no time, taking down Cofer early in the round and achieving side control in the process. Setting up the submission, Pichel transitioned to mount, locked on an arm-triangle, took side control once more which forced Cofer to tap 44-seconds into the sudden death round.
“Cofer is a tough ass dude,” Pichel said during the post-fight interview. “I honestly thought I was going to be able to come out here and pick him apart with shots, but look, he got me and that’s all I can really say.
“I came out with a game plan and when a game plan fails, you go for broke. That’s what I did and I came out on top so I’m happy.”
Team Faber’s Cofer took the loss hard and had little to say after the fight.
“It is a tough pill to swallow when you lose,” Cofer explained. “Hats off to Vinc, he’s a good fighter, obviously.”
Showing his excitement for the live fight, White, expressed his feelings about what he saw in the Octagon.
“Those guys never stopped battling,” White said. “It was an absolute war and that is what I love.”
Taking back control of the fight picks, the victory for Team Cruz evens the fights at three apiece. To end the show, coach Cruz selected Sam Sicilia to represent his team against Team Faber’s Chris Saunders in next week’s live fight.