By Andre Allen
The show opened up with a good recap of how the final four guys got to the semis. The recap showed highlights of their fights, as well as having the fighters talk about why they think they'll win. It also had Greg Jackson and Randy Couture talk about them.
After the recap, they had Bjorn Rebney and all four coaches in the gym to rank the guys. Jackson felt Riggs should be ranked number one but the three other coaches felt based on the fights this season, Cole Williams was the number one guy. So the rankings are 1) Cole Williams. 2) Joe Riggs. 3) Eric Bradley. 4) Mike Bronzoulis.
Couture lets Williams know he's now ranked number one and if he wants to pick Bronzoulis ( also of xtreme Couture) he wouldn't be upset. Williams ultimately ends up picking Joe Riggs and reasoned that with the tough weight cuts Riggs has been going through, now was the time to fight him.
Cole Williams (1) vs Joe Riggs (2)
Round 1) Not much happened during the first half of the round as both guys were just feeling each other out. Williams slipped and as he got up, Riggs landed a small flurry of punches. Towards the end of the round Williams got a takedown but Riggs popped right back up. Williams then got another takedown but did absolutely nothing except hold him down as Riggs threw some punches off his back. Pretty lackluster round. 10-9 Riggs.
Round 2) Riggs threw a left kick which Williams caught and then got the takedown. The whole round was Williams on top but he was doing nothing! He threw a few punches and elbows but didn't really land anything. Riggs, however, was landing some real good elbows from the bottom. He eventually cut Williams on the bridge of his nose with an elbow. Even though Williams got the takedown and spent the round on top of Riggs, I gave this round to Riggs as he clearly did more damage from the bottom. 20-18 Riggs.
Round 3) Round started off with Williams going for the takedown. He finally got it but Riggs immediately popped back up. Then both guys decided to stand and Riggs clearly got the better of Williams for the rest of the round. 30-27 Riggs.
They don't announce the scores, Jimmy Smith just said it was a split decision with Riggs being declared the winner. Joe Riggs very emotional after the win. I wonder if Williams was second guessing his decision to pick Riggs after this fight.
Winner Joe Riggs by split decision
Eric Bradley (3) vs Mike Bronzoulis (4)
I just have to say that Bronzoulis' face looked a mess before the fight even started.
Round 1) It was a minute and a half before the first punch was thrown! Eric Bradley went for the takedown and got it pretty easily. For the rest of the round Bradley controlled Bronzoulis on the ground and landed some good body shots. Bradley was able to get side control and full mount pretty much with ease. 10-9 Bradley.
Round 2) Bradley got the takedown early on. Landed a bit of ground and pound but Bronzoulis got back up. Bradley continued working for takedowns but Bronzoulis all of a sudden learned how to stuff a takedown. With about a little over a minute left, Bradley tried for a takedown but Bronzoulis stuffed it and started punching Bradleys sides. It didn't really look like anything but as he kept doing it, you got the feeling it was starting to hurt Bradley. So they're in a position where Bradley is on all fours with his head between Bronzoulis' legs (think executed pedigree) and Bronzoulis is teeing off on him however, he lands 2 illegal (12-6) elbows on Bradley back. Bradley rolls over on his back and Bronzoulis lands ground and pound till the ref stops it with :15 left. Jackson says there was four illegal elbows but while four were thrown, only 2 landed.
Winner Mike Bronzoulis by TKO
So as the show ends they hype up the finale but they NEVER tell you when it is!!! I'm pretty sure its Sept 7 but they never let you know. Its baffling.
Overall I thought the show was so so. I liked the opening bit they did on the fighters and I like the idea of Mike Bronzoulis being somewhat of a cinderella story. I'm also a fan of Joe Riggs trying to make a comeback. So for those reasons, I'm glad these two guys are in the finals. I definitely think this is Riggs fight to lose and I think he should get through Bronzoulis fairly easy.