‘TUF 25’ Recap: Episode 10

By Mike Sloan Jun 21, 2017
Wednesday’s episode begins with T.J. Dillashaw sporting his new “Killashaw” T-shirts, jokingly embracing the snake moniker his bitter rival Cody Garbrandt has given him. When Dillashaw and his team meet up with Team Garbrandt in the hallway, T.J. hisses at him and tries to be the funny guy. “No Love,” as expected, isn’t playing games and immediately berates him for his behavior.

The teams are now in the gym for Jesse Taylor and Hayder Hassan to weigh-in, but the coaches start jawing at each other. Per the norm, Team Garbrandt’s coaches rail into Dillashaw for -- shocker -- leaving Team Alpha Male. Justin Buchholz is the primary instigator in this verbal skirmish, but cooler heads prevail and there is no riot. However, while Hassan and Taylor are weighing in, “No Love” and Dillashaw begin jawing at each other even more, calling each other names like they’re in the schoolyard, which completely takes away from tonight’s combatants’ weigh-ins. It takes James Krause to stand up and shout to the coaches to, “Shut your fu**ing mouths and let them weigh in!”

The editing team wastes no time at all and quickly moves on to the fight. Taylor and Hassan admit they truly like each other as friends but this is a business and they must destroy the other in order to succeed in this crazy sport. Jason Herzog is the ref for this one and it’s time to scrap.

Taylor begins round one by shooting in repeatedly before finally dragging Hassan to the canvas. Hassan tries to scramble back to his feet, but Taylor is all over him and takes his back. Though Taylor loses his position, the wrestler quickly slams his foe back to the ground and immediately seizes his back again. “Hulk” is a little panicked underneath while trying to free himself, but Taylor is relentless. After softening his opponent up with punches from behind, “JT Money” fishes for the rear-naked choke. Taylor sinks in the choke a few times, but Hassan keeps prying his arms free and escaping. Finally, with Terminator-like pursuit, Taylor locks in the choke permanently and Hassan has no choice but to tap out, ending the fight in just over two minutes.

Once the commercial break concludes, it’s time for the final quarterfinal bout’s weigh-ins between Ramsey Nijem and Krause, who both come in on the money. Nijem says that he and Krause are the best guys in the house and would meet in the TUF 25 Finale had they not been pitted against each other. Nijem and “No Love” take verbal jabs at each other, but it’s all in fun.

Marc Smith is the ref for this battle and Krause opens the bout with a low kick to the thigh. Nijem unloads a volley of punches, but they miss, which allows Krause to score an easy double-leg takedown. Krause quickly moves to half guard, but Nijem is fishing for a kimura from his back. Krause stays heavy from on top but he’s unable to move to either side control or full mount. Nijem tries to explode out to his feet, but his back roll falls short, leaving his back exposed. Krause fishes for a rear-naked choke and misses it, and before Nijem can scramble back to his feet, he has to eat a few knees to the body. Krause lands a few punches to the head and kicks to the body, keeping Ramsey away with two minutes left. Krause presses his foe into the cage and then takes him down rather easily as he pours on the pressure. It takes a minute before Nijem is able to battle back to his feet but when he does, he swallows a left hook. Krause attacks with a head kick but it’s blocked, though he closes out the frame with a spinning backfist to the face, which forces Nijem to shoot in. Easy 10-9 round for Krause.

Round two begins with Nijem slamming a few low kicks into Krause’s left thigh. Krause backs away and Nijem is aggressive with punches to the head, landing several. Krause fails at a takedown and now it’s Nijem’s turn to be the aggressor from on top. Krause reverses position and presses Ramsey into the cage, but Nijem is again able to wall-walk back up. Krause tags him with a knee to the body and within moments, it’s Nijem who scores a powerful takedown. Krause threatens with a moderate guillotine from the seat of his trunks, but it’s more just to keep Nijem from advancing while he catches his breath. Krause is cut on his forehead at the midway point; both men are exhausted. Nijem is grinding away with meager punches from top position, but he’s not dishing out a ton of punishment. Krause is unable to do anything, other than wall-walk back to his feet. From there, Krause tags his foe with scattered punches to the head, prompting Nijem to dive in and press him into the cage. 10-9 Nijem.

A “Sudden Victory” round is upon us. Both men are cautious to begin the stanza, trying to conserve what precious energy they have left. The two trade decent punches to the cranium, each taking and giving well. A right to the face for Krause, who is then forced into the cage. From there, Krause takes it to the canvas. Nijem is running on fumes as he turtles up and then rolls over to pull guard. Krause peppers him with punches to the body from within full guard, followed by scattered shots to the dome. Nijem has nothing left, but Krause doesn’t have enough energy at the moment to finish him. Smith instructs Krause to work from on top and he obliges by crashing a hard right elbow to the face. With 90 seconds remaining, Nijem has to do something drastic or else he will lose. Krause continues to grind away from on top but he allows his opponent to scramble back to his feet. Nijem dives back down for a takedown, but Krause stuffs him. They separate back to their feet and swing away. Nijem cracks him with a right cross, but he takes a few in return. Nijem, in one last desperate attempt, scores a takedown and lands on top. Krause sweeps him with 10 seconds left and finishes the fight searching for a guillotine. 10-9 Krause, who should win the decision.

As expected, Krause gets the judges nod via unanimous decision, but he has suffered a corneal scratch, though he says it’s nothing that won’t heal in a few days.

Next up, it’s time for the semifinal deliberations. The two coaches are brought into a room to Skype with Ultimate Fighting Championship President Dana White. The prez warns them that Krause might not be able to fight due to the eye situation, but they won’t know for sure for a few days. Naturally, the hated rivals can’t agree on who should fight whom and when Dillashaw says that he’s worried about Krause’s health, “No Love” chimes in and ridicules T.J. for now thinking about his fighter’s health but a few weeks ago, he didn’t care about Joe Stevenson’s. At the end of the meeting, the coaches arrange the fighters and reveal that Dhiego Lima will face Tom Gallicchio in the first semifinal while Krause will collide with Taylor in the other.
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