(Jeremy Larsen vs. Jeff Smith)
Unique one round format decided fate of16 fights
Series resumes next Friday on FX at regular time of 10 p.m. ET/PT
LAS VEGAS (March 9, 2012) – Sixteen of the best unsigned fighters in theworld took their first step towards glory Friday night as they won their firstround tournament fights in the fast-paced premiere of The Ultimate Fighter®Live on FX.
The 32 UFC hopefuls arrived at the famed TUF Gym in Las Vegas ready to fighttheir way into the final 16, but they were met with a stunning announcement:all first round elimination bouts would consist of a single five-minute round.
The result was some of the most intense, emotional and action-packed bouts inTUF history, including a startling eight-second KO.
In addition, fighters were offered a bonus of $5,000 if they succeeded inscoring a submission or knockout in their fight. A total of $40,000 was handedout.
With the win, the victors now move into The Ultimate Fighter® Live House forthe next 12 weeks as they continue to compete for a lucrative six-figurecontract with the UFC®.
"One round! That’s all we needed tonight. These guys came out and killedit," said UFC President Dana White. "We have some real tough guysthis season and they want it bad. I guess the extra incentive didn’t hurteither."
Bitter rivals and TUF Live coaches Dominick Cruz – the reigning UFCbantamweight champion - Uriah Faber – the No1 contender - both liked what theysaw Friday night.
Cruz said: "We got to see some great action from these guys. They came outand showed us that they wanted it and they wanted it bad. There's a lot of goodfighters to choose from and I'm going to build the best team I can."
Faber said: "My assistant coaches and I have our hands full tonight.There’s a lot of talent this season and I have to weigh what I want and what’sgoing to help me beat Team Cruz."
1. Joe Proctor (8-1), Pembroke, Mass., submitted Jordan Rinaldi (5-1),Matthews, N.C., by guillotine choke at 2:08
2. Cristiano Marcello (13-3), Curitiba,Brazil, submitted Jared Carlsten (3-1),Los Angeles, Calif., at 2:42
3. Sam Sicilia (11-0), Spokane Valley, Wash., knocked out Erin Beach (3-2), SanDiego, Calif., at 0:08
4. Chris Tickle (8-4), Bloomington, Ill., knocked out Austin Lyons (9-2),Cordova, Tenn., at 0:44
5. Andy Ogle (9-1), Tynemouth, England,defeated Brendan Weafer (6-4), New York,N.Y., by unanimous decision
6. Vinc Pichel (8-0), Sherman Oaks, Calif., submitted Cody Pfister (7-4),Amarillo, Texas, at 3:39
7. John Cofer (8-1), Hull, Ga., defeated Mark Glover (5-2-1), Liverpool,England, by unanimous decision
8. Chris Saunders (10-2), Long Beach, Calif; defeated Chase Hackett (4-2),Littleton, Colo., by unanimous decision
9. James Vick (5-0), Fort Worth, Texas, defeated Dakota Cochrane (11-3), Omaha,Neb., by split decision
10. Michael Chiesa (8-0), Spokane Valley, Wash., sumitted Johnavan Vistante(4-2), Pearl City, Hawaii, at 2:05
11. Mike Rio (9-1), Miami, Fla., submitted Ali Maclean (9-6-1), Belfast,Northern Ireland, at 3:32
12. Justin Lawrence (4-0), Villa Ridge,Mo., Knockedout James Krause (14-5),Blue Springs, Mo., at 1:25
13. Daron Cruickshank (10-2), Wayne, Mich.; defeated Drew Dober (8-3), Omaha,Neb., by unanimous decision
14. Jeremy Larsen (9-2), Phoenix, Ariz., defeated Jeff Smith (9-2),Mechanicsburg, Penn., by unanimous decision
15. Al Iaquinta (6-1-1), Wantagh, N.Y., defeated Jon Tuck (6-1), Hagtna, Guam,by unanimous decision
16. Myles Jury (10-0), San Diego, Calif. defeated Akbarh Arreloa (19-7-1),Chula Vista, Calif., by unanimous decision
Proctor: "I’m pumped. This is the best thing to ever happen to me, so Ihave no complaints.’’
Marcello: "I feel great. I’m so happy for me, my family, my wife, my kidsand the people of Brazil who I know were up and watching. I’m very proud to behere and get the opportunity to be in the house."
Sicilia: "I came in ready to fight. I trained hard. You saw my fight. Iloaded up with the right hand. My life changed in eight seconds, so I am reallyexcited to be here.’’
Tickle: "I’m happy. That was my game plan, to stay in the pocket with himand punch. He was coming forward and I just stayed in the pocket and caughthim.’’
Ogle: "I was really excited to be in there. Just the canvas itself feltlike no other canvas I had been on. This was a dream come true. It was surreal.I think knowing my Mom watched the fight back in England probably helped me.’’
Pichel: "I feel great. I got my first submission so I feel good aboutthat. He came out strong and was well prepared. It was a little nerve-rackingbut I started to relax and I did what I had to do.’’
Cofer: "I probably could have been more active, and probably didn’tdisplay my best ability but I guess I controlled it and I won so I am ecstatic.I’m happy with the win and happy to be here.’’
Saunders: "I’m happy with the win but disappointed I didn’t finish. Ithought I had the guillotine but he persevered and pulled through it. Still,though, I’m very happy.’’
Vick: "I feel great about the win and I’m in the house. This is a dreamcome true. It’s the first step.’’
Chiesa: "It wasn’t the way I wanted to win, I like to go there and bang,but I really wanted to secure my spot in the house so I just went out and putthe pressure on and got him down."
Rio: "I wasn’t trying to out-strike him. I was just trying to keep him ata distance because I knew he wanted to wrestle. Overall, I stuck to my gameplan and waited for my opportunity. I did everything I needed to do to win thisfight and get into the house.’’
Lawrence: I just went in there and had the time of my life. That guy was thefavorite and had a lot more fights than me, but stats and records go out thewindow when you only have five minutes to fight.’’
Cruickshank: "I’m pretty excited. I worked very hard to get here. I’mready to move on.’’
Larsen: "The most important thing for me tonight was to win and to get inthe house. I feel ok about my performance and I’m looking forward to gettingthis show started."
Iaquinta: "I worked really hard to get here and I’m happy and relieved toget the victory."
Jury: "I hadn’t fought in over a year and I feel I fought one of thetoughest guys here tonight. But I’m happy with the win. This is only thebeginning.’’
Log-on during the season and get the inside scoop through the fighter’s Twitteraccounts:
Al Iaquinta - @aliaquinta
Andy Ogle - @thelittleaxe
Cristiano Marcello - @CristianoBJfJ
Chris Saunders - @kidisgood
Chris Tickle - @badboytickle
Daron Cruickshank - @cruickshank155
James Vick - @JamesVickMMA
Jeremy Larsen - @jeremylarsenmma
Joe Proctor - @JoeProctor
John Cofer - @coferpottery
Justin Lawrence - @theamericankidd
Sam Sicilia - @SamSiciliaTUF
Michael Chiesa - @mikemav22
Mike Rio - @mikeriomma
Myles Jury - @FuryJury
Vinc Pichel - @FromHellPichel
For more show information, bios, videos and photos, visit ultimatefighter.com.