‘TUF 23′ Recap: Episode 5

The episode starts right away with Lanchana Green and her team training, getting ready for her eventual brawl with fellow Brit Helen Harper. She tells the camera about her upbringing and how she got beaten up by these mean girls when she was a kid, which led her down the path of martial arts. Shortly thereafter, Ultimate Fighting Championship women’s strawweight champ Joanna Jedrzejczyk brings former opponent Carla Esparza into the locker room and the team is pumped. Jedrzejczyk explains that she likes her as a fighter and person and is excited to have her around. They are trying to gameplan Harper for her fight with Green later tonight and are working diligently on kick-catches and throws. After the first commercial, it’s back at the house and Harper tells the team that her ex used to beat on her. Finally, she reveals, so she dumped him, learned to defend herself, and now here she is telling her story to the world. She admits that people close to her were worried for her safety because she didn’t realize how bad it really was. It was hard, obviously, and she’s crying into the camera about her struggles and survival. It’s already the next day and the editing team quickly jumps into today’s drama. Abdel Medjedoub gets a phone call from home and it’s his wife. The producer is with Medjedoub in a room and she is freaking out, yelling and lacing every other word with French profanities. Apparently he did something untoward before he came onto the show or else she obviously wouldn’t be acting like this. It’s personal, too personal, he tells the camera, and that he made a big mistake. She is threatening to divorce him and he needs to leave the show right this instant to sort out the mess he made, but the audience never actually learns what the fighter did to create such turmoil. Almost as soon as it begins, the huge tease from last week — Medjedoub’s drama bomb — is over and it’s on to tonight’s fight. After both women explain how much they like one another but will leave that aside in order to win, it’s time to fight. It’s pretty early in the episode so either A) this will be a long fight that goes into Sudden Victory or B) all hell will break loose between the two coaches after the fight. In any event, it’s time for some violence. Round 1: Harper is aggressive but Green keeps her distance. A nice right to the jaw by Green 25 seconds in, but Harper takes it well. …

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