The Ultimate Fighter 21: ATT vs. Blackzilians: Episode 10 Review

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With Kamaru Usman’s victory over Steve Carl last week, the Blackzilians edged ever closer to glory. They are now just one victory away from winning the season outright and picking up $200,000. ATT, meanwhile, must win all of their remaining three fights in order to snatch the season out from under the noses of Glenn Robinson and his team.

‏”It’s like the Blackzilians can’t lose”, said Dana White in assessing the season so far. “Now it’s gotten to the point where they’re in a sudden death situation… Dan has to pick the perfect fighter… Not only does he have to pick the right fighter, he has to pick a guy who wants to go in, who wants to fight, and who wants to win this thing for the American Top Team. It’s a do or die situation for Dan and the American Top Team right now.”

Despite his recent loss, Dan Lambert and the coaching staff at ATT demonstrate their confidence in team captain Nate Coy by selecting him to represent them in this all important “sudden death” bout. The Blackzilians, who are in a markedly less desperate position, choose Valdir “Baby Monster” Araujo. Baby Monster submitted Steve Carl by way of mounted guillotine, securing the first finish of the season back in Episode 3.

After a brief recreational visit to the Harley-Davidson shop, it’s time for the weigh-ins. Both Coy and Araujo make weight without issue. In a strange turn of events, however, Glenn Robinson accuses Dan Lambert of attempting to cheat when he notices Sabah Homasi rehydrating after Coy’s name is called. Robinson believes that Lambert had two fighters on weight and was waiting until the Blackzilians announced their fighter before deciding who would face them. Dana white was quick to to dismiss this accusation, however, stating that both teams were required to submit paperwork with their chosen fighter’s name to the Florida State Athletic Commission the morning of the weigh-in. After some hostile words between Lambert and Robinson, the tension simmers down, and the teams are set for a potentially season-deciding fight.

Valdir “Baby Monster” Araujo vs. Nate Coy
The fight opens with some aggressive striking from both men. Twenty seconds in, Coy executes his first takedown and dumps Araujo to the canvas. They are against the cage, and Araujo is trying to work a guillotine from half guard on the bottom. Coy defends the guillotine but ends up in Araujo’s full guard. Coy is trying to strike from on top, while Baby Monster looks for submissions from his back. Araujo is bleeding from his right eye as Coy continues to land strikes. Coy briefly passes to side control with about a minute to go, but Araujo quickly regains butterfly guard. The Blackzilian rolls under for a leg prompting Coy to stand, and they see out the final seconds of the round on their feet.

Dan Lambert utters the word “perfect” at the end of the first round. The fight is going according to plan for ATT. The Blackzilians coaching staff – in the knowledge that they probably lost the round – ask Araujo to open his guard and stand up rather than looking for submissions from his back.

The second round begins with some wild striking. Coy lands a big knee to the body from the clinch. Araujo responds with a flying kick, which opens him up for a takedown. Baby monster grabs the neck of the ATT product on the way to the canvas and tries to secure a guillotine. There is momentary panic in the ATT corner as the submission looks tight, but Coy manages to break free. Araujo is on top now, landing strikes and looking for submissions. He moves to mount briefly, but Coy escapes. Coy repeatedly gives up his neck, but despite numerous guillotine attempts, Baby Monster is unable to finish. Coy is back on top now in a frantic round. Araujo makes a couple of attempts to roll under for a leg, and on the second attempt he secures a kneebar. It looks good, but Coy calmly defends and gets back on top, where he spends the remainder of the round.

“Unbelievable!”, Dana White said in an animated post-fight interview.”So, the American Top Team is about to be eliminated. Coy digs deep, he comes in, he wins the fight for the American Top Team. They’re going crazy, they’re all excited. They need to keep this momentum going, and the guys who come in and fight next need to deliver the way that Coy delivered.”

So, in arguably the fight of the season, ATT keep their hopes alive and reduce the deficit to just 100 points. A win next week would see them draw level and set up a final week season-deciding fight. The Blackzilians still need just one victory to clinch the season and the $200,000 prize.

Tune in to SevereMMA.com next week to see if the Blackzilans can see the season out, or if ATT will live to fight another day.