By Jeremy Wall
The first episode of The Ultimate Fighter Brazil: Season 4 debuted in Brazil on April 5th and internationally on Fight Pass on April 6th. The season features two tournaments at lightweight and bantamweight. The coaches are Anderson Silva and Mauricio Shogun, until episode four when Anderson is replaced by Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. The first episode featured the entry round fights to get into the house.
The episode also introduced the two coaches, Anderson Silva and Mauricio Shogun. The episode was filmed at the end of January and it was interesting because no mention was made of Anderson’s positive test, or that he is being replacing by Rodrigo Nogueira as coach beginning with the fourth episode. I’m curious as to how UFC handles the issue on this show when Anderson is replaced.
There were a few good fights and some standout personalities in the first episode. They aired at least parts of all eight entry round fights. The problem with airing so many fights in one episode is that it is hard for nearly any single fighter to standout unless they win with a killer knockout or do something else crazy.
The episode opened with all sixteen fighters arriving in Las Vegas together and showing up at The Ultimate Fighter Gym. They toast to the opportunity while inside the octagon. Dana White came out with Anderson and Shogun. Dana said this season had two of the best coaches ever and did his speech about how many greats have come through The Ultimate Fighter.
Anderson said he is excited and that he is a better teacher than he is a fighter. He gave a speech telling the fighters to respect one another and not to engage in vandalism. Shogun gave a speech saying that a lot of people do not like this sport and these guys should show everyone back home that they are all just normal guys.
They take all sixteen fighters to UFC 183 with Anderson beating Nick Diaz. The fighters are shown in the audience watching the match. Some of them had never been to a UFC event before.
The show jumps ahead to the next morning with the guys prepping to fight. Before each fight they aired a brief talking head with each fighter and showed clips of the city where he is from.
I pulled each of the official results off Wikipedia.
Bruno Mesquita defeated Franklyn Santos via knockout (spinning hook kick) in the first round at bantamweight.
Santos is from Rio and talked about moving to Rio to become a pro fighter. Bruno is also from Rio and likes to train in tae kwon do. Bruno knocked Santos out with a spinning hook kick about ninety seconds into the fight, which came out of nowhere as both guys had spent the entire bout just dancing and looking at each other. Shogun and Dana White were both impressed with the finish.
Joaquim Silva defeated Carlos Costa via TKO (punches) in the third round at lightweight.
Silva is from Curitiba. Costa is shown in Las Vegas. Costa says he wants to show all Brazilians what a young black man can do. They showed clips of the fight with the coaches talking about how controversial the fight was. Costa is a loudmouth who spent a lot of time taunting Silva. Shogun said the bout was close, so they went to a third round. Costa gassed in the third. Anderson said he was taunting too much and injured himself. Silva finished Costa by TKO, but Costa looked way too tired to continue anyway. Costa injured his arm before the third round.
Dileno Lopes defeated Renato Mônaco via submission (rear-naked choke) in the first round at bantamweight.
Renato Moaco is from Londrina and trains with his brother Tiago, who is also a fighter. Lopes is from Manaus and tried out for the first season of TUF Brazil, but didn’t make it into the house.
Lopes shows some pretty nice kickboxing and then gets a takedown into side control. He passes into full mount, takes Monaco’s back, and submits him with a rear naked choke in a quick fight. The coaches both talked about how impressed they were with Lopes after the fight.
Nazareno Malegarie defeated Edson Pereira via unanimous decision after two rounds at lightweight.
Nazareno is from Florianopolis. He is Argentinean, but lives in Brazil. Pereira is from Vinhedo. They only show clips of the fight with both coaches discussing. Shogun said both guys are good grapplers. Pereira gassed and Nazareno ended up getting a unanimous decision. After the fight Nazareno talked about how much his parents sacrificed to get him here.
Matheus Nicolau defeated Mateus Vasco via submission (rear-naked choke) in the first round at bantamweight.
Nicolau trains in Rio and moved there to become a pro fighter. He lives in a slum and he says it was the first time he has ever been in a slum. Vasco is from Sorocaba. He says everyone considers him a great striker, but he is also great at jiu jitsu. Vasco nearly got an armbar to start, but lost it and gave up side control. Nicolau eventually transitions into back mount and taps Vasco with a rear naked choke. After the fight Anderson said Nicolau looked more seasoned. Shogun said he wants Nicolau on his team and thinks he can reach the finals of the bantamweight tournament.
Glaico França defeated Raush Manfio via submission (rear-naked choke) in the second round at lightweight.
Raush is from Rio. He trains with Team Nogueira. Glaico is from Camboriu. He says his build is different compared to other lightweights because he is taller and has more reach. They showed clips of the fight with the coaches talking about it. Shogun said it was an aggressive fight. Glaico got mount earl in the second round and after a couple of minutes tapped Raush with a rear naked choke. Shogun thinks Glaico could win the lightweight tournament. Anderson was also impressed. After the bout Glaico talked about how he used elbows on the ground to open cuts on Raush’s face.
Bruno Silva defeated Gustavo Sedório via TKO (jaw injury) in the first round at bantamweight.
Bruno is from Rio. He grew up outside of Sao Paulo and he likes to dance hip hop and put on a show in his fights. Sedorio is shown in Huntington Beach. He is originally from Curitiba, but trains with Team Checkmat in Los Angeles.
Bruno opens the fight with a beautiful front kick to Sedorio’s face, which landed square on the jaw. Sedorio actually broke his jaw off the kick, but made it to the end of the round before the doctor examined him and called the fight. Bruno threw a lot of spinning stuff during the round. When the doctor called the fight, Bruno did five straight back flips across the ring. Shogun thought it was a fantastic fight. Anderson thought both did well, but Bruno had an edge because he has more boxing experience. Of all the fighters in the first episode, I thought Bruno was the only one that stood out with star potential. With his dancing and kickboxing he come off a bit like a Brazilian Genki Sudo.
Erick da Silva defeated Gabriel Macário via TKO (punches and elbows) in the second round at lightweight.
Erick is from Manaus. He said he represents “the blood of the true mad Indian”. Macario is from Sao Paulo and talks about being from a well off family. They showed clips of this fight. Anderson said Gabriel was a better boxer, but Erick had better jiu jitsu. Erick cut Gabriel’s face with elbows on the ground, which resulted in the ref stepping in to stop the fight.
Shogun and Anderson closed the talking about how impressed they were. Anderson said there were a lot of surprises to come. He wasn’t kidding.
The next episode both coaches pick their teams and the first elimination fight is announced.
Overall a good show. This format of TUF has grown stale and I’m looking forward to season twenty-one with ATT vs the Blackzilians, which debuts later this month, as the new format should be refreshing. But within the context of what TUF has become this was a solid first episode and with the Anderson PED situation the next few episodes should be interesting if only for that reason.