TUF 23 || Live Results from Episode 2

Written by @NickRiznerMMA

Season 23 of The Ultimate Fighter premiers tonight on Fox Sports 1 at 10 pm ET. This season will feature both strawweights and light heavyweights, with head coaches Joanna Jedrzejczyk and Claudia Gadelha set to compete for the UFC Women’s Strawweight Championship on July 8th.

Check out the recap of episode 1, featuring all of the preliminary bouts to enter the house, by clicking this link.

Episode 2

Hahaha the way the rooms panned out, one of the guys is going to have to stay in the girls room. What a fortunate “accident” for the TUF production crew. It looks like Cory Hendricks landed the spare bed. Hilarious set up, nonetheless. We’ll see how that works out for everyone involved.

 And another unfortunate twist as Hendricks has some foot damage. No broken foot, but he’s got some contusions and has been advised to avoid contact for a few days. He, of course, is up first and will need to handle his training cautiously.

And our first verbal exchange between coaches! Of course the camera cut away so we simply HAVE to keep it locked on TUF. Reportedly, these type of exchanges happened each time these two were in the same room as each other. Fascinating.

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Both teams seem to be getting a kick out of this beef between the coaches. I’m not gonna lie, I am too.

“I’m smart. I’m clever girl.” – Joanna Jedrzejczyk

Right away, we see a fundamental difference between coaching styles, as Joanna looks to be combining her entire team as Claudia has divided hers between girls and guys.

Teammates Cory Hendricks and Khalil Rountree ready themselves for battle, and explore the awkwardness of the situation. Apparently, Joanna didn’t know the two were teammates, but whether that’s true or not is irrelevant. It’s going to be a strange dynamic for sure. Even hearing Cory talk strategy and referencing what Khalil “usually does in sparring” is strange.

—————— COMMERCIAL BREAK ——————

Khalil talks about being bully as a child for his weight and his love for punk rock and skateboarding. It’s wild how many fighters have similar backstories. Gotta love MMA.

It seems like the gameplan is to keep things standing for Khalil and to go to the mat for Cory. Those are likely the stylistic advantages for both man, regardless, but add in the damaged foot and it’s all amplified.

—————— COMMERCIAL BREAK ——————

Haha Joanna talking trash to the boxing coach that doesn’t speak English is hilarious. This is turning into a legendary rivalry already. I can’t wait for these two to fight!! There’s something addictive about both of these girls arguing in broken English. Hilarious back-and-forths through one.

Now to the weigh ins. Khalil weighs 204. Hendricks weighs 204. And we’re good to go. But first, another commercial break. Fight time once we return!!

—————— COMMERCIAL BREAK ——————

Helen Harper’s sickness reaches a boiling point, but a trip to the hospital and an IV seems to have fixed the problem.

At least temporarily. Dana stops by the locker room to explain this season’s bonuses – two $25,000 Performance of the Night bonuses and one $50,000 Fight of the Night bonus – and we’re off. Both fighters have entered the cage. But first…. another commercial. Ugh.

—————— COMMERCIAL BREAK ——————

 Round 1:

The round opens with Rountree getting the best of the standup, as expected. Hendricks counters by scoring a takedown but it’s short-lived, as Rountree works back to the feet. Every time Hendricks charges in, Rountree scores with that hard hook. But alas, Hendricks gets another takedown and quickly takes his back. He sinks in the hooks, then the rear-naked choke, and he gets the tap! Big win for Hendricks, especially with the damaged foot.

Official Result: Cory Hendricks def. Khalil Rountree via rear-naked choke.

Incredible character and respect from Khalil. Really looking forward to his fighting future!!

Next fight takes place at strawweight. Claudia has chosen Tatiana Suarez vs. JJ Aldrich to fight next week. I’m looking forward to that one.

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