MMA Crossfire – TUF 22: Episode One thoughts
It’s taken me a while to process the first episode of TUF 22. What to make of Conor McGregor? The tension between McGregor and Urijah Faber?
The fights? Here we go.
Welcome back to The Crossfire.
The basic foundation for this season is that there are two well-established coaches for the lightweight division (155 pounders). The coaches, Faber and McGregor, will be helping the new hopefuls with the assistance of their coaching staff for the entire season. However, the coaches will not be fighting each other at the end. One big difference that was discovered in the first episode is that the coaches do not get a say in their teams. The episode starts off with two fighters from the American side, slugging it out to get into the house. Then two fighters from Europe, etc. The winners are in the house, that’s how the teams are made.
Honestly, there are some great fighters on both sides. Such a difference from the first season of TUF. The fighters are coming in well-rounded, technical, and you could see all of that already lined up for this season. Very entertaining!
The teams are composed of:
Johnny Nunez, Thanh Le, Julian Erosa, Billy Quarantello, Jason Gonzalez, Tom Gallicchio, Chris Gruetzemacher, James Jenkins.
David Teymur (SWE), Saul Rogers (ENG), Mehdi Baghdad (FRA), Frantz Slioa (SWE), Abner Lloveras (SPA), Martin Svensson (SWE), Marcin Wrzosek (POL), Sascha Sharma (GER).
The fighter that stood out to me on Team USA was Thanh Le, who got a TKO finish, with kicks and fantastic combinations, and with his karate stance is just a dynamite counterstriker. On Team Europe, Abner Lloveras showed his experience, patience, and high level of grappling. The tragic part of Lloveras’s fight to get into the house is that his opponent had to verbally submit after having his shoulder pop out 3 times! Like I said, some high level fighters coming on TUF for this season.
I’m excited to see people who really want to fight with the skills to back up their words. This season looks like it is going to deliver that. The interesting part for me was the information regarding McGregor as a coach and his behaviour on the show. Prior to the show airing, McGregor had stated that he isn’t going to be present for most of the training, if any. He is there more as a motivational coach? Not quite sure. Then on the show, McGregor went into the fighters locker room, but only to go in there and to talk to his fellow training partner. He actually didn’t talk to any of the other guys there. He was strutting around with his Interim belt over his should the whole time. Only time will tell how this will affect the team, if it does at all.
What are your thoughts on McGregor as a coach?