The Ultimate Fighter 20.09: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

By Nathan McCarter

The Ultimate Fighter continued with its drama aspect to much dismay from everyone, but this episode had a redeeming quality in Randa Markos.

Markos and Felice Herrig were scheduled to fight this week, and Markos won in another upset. She finished the fight in the first round with an armlock, and advanced to the semi-finals.

Witnessing the rise of Markos has been special. She has come from nowhere to topple two of the more popular fighters in the division, and has gained quite a fanbase from the show.

Next week we get to see Jessica Penne vs. Aisling Daly.

But before we get there, here is the good, the bad, and the ugly from the latest TUF offering:

The Good:

  • Anthony Pettis showed solid coaching in trying to find a solution for the training issue with 7 of the final 8 fighters on his team. Pettis separated them into two groups, but when Markos showed up, he also knew he couldn’t send her home. It’s an individual sport, and she was doing what was best for her.
  • Markos is the big winner from the show. She entered as an unknown commodity to most, and a non-top-10 fighter. She comes across extremely likable in the talking head interviews, and has shown her skills very well.
  • Speaking of Markos showing her skills well, she ended Herrig’s run in the tournament quickly. The submission was a rarely seen scarf-hold armlock, and Herrig had never been finished in a fight before this. Quality wins are piling up for Markos.

The Bad:

  • The in-house drama continued. I don’t want to spend more time on this nonsense.
  • The fighter who has come off most poorly compared to how she was perceived going into the show may be Carla Esparza. It may be the editing, or spending six weeks in the house, but she is coming across as a selfish, entitled, petulant child. She has a rough time when things do not go exactly the way she wants — from Tecia Torres re-entering the show to some of her teammates having no issue training with their future opponents.

The Ugly:

  • Yes, there was a slumber party. TUF cannot get out of its own way.
  • Felice Herrig isn’t coming off much better than Esparza. Her confrontations with Markos and others at the pool and in the team van were cringeworthy television. The patty-cake between Herrig and Esparza was the tipping point from bad to ugly. These are adults?

The Ultimate Fighter 20

Felice Herrig vs. Randa Markos: Randa Markos def. Felice Herrig via submission (modified armbar) in Round 1.

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