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Inside the Octagon


Mike Dolce’s “Ultimate Fighter 7” blog: Week 8



Most of you may recognize the above phrase made popular by Kraft Foods’ legendary anthropomorphic pitcher, the Kool-Aid Man.

That’s right. I finally used the word anthropomorphic in a sentence!

Anyway, standing eight-feet tall and five-feet wide the Kool-Aid Man is quite an imposing figure, especially considering the fact that he is usually seen crashing through brick walls on his way to bring sugar-filled refreshments to the thirsty children of the television world.kool-aidman.jpg

Let me tell you friends, the Kool-Aid Man has nothing on Forrest Griffin!

Picture Nick Klein calmly finishing up his pre-fight warm-up just minutes before he is set to take on CB Dollaway in their preliminary match of “The Ultimate Fighter 7,” and “OH YEAH!” here comes six-foot, five-inch, 240-pound Forrest smashing through the door in a temporary fit of blind rage. Talk about composure. That’s the last thing a fighter needs to deal with prior to getting in the cage.

Tensions soon evened out and we got right back to the next bout, which was a good one.

Dollaway and I were both on Team Rampage, so I knew what he was capable of. Klein, on the other hand, was a bit of a question mark.

His physical proportions were obvious. The tallest guy on the show and possibly the heaviest, Nick had secured his position in the house via rear naked choke over a pretty tough opponent. But his unassuming demeanor made him seem much less like a fighter and more like a regular nice guy.

Out of all my teammates, I probably sparred with CB more than anyone else. The kid was tough. CB is an All-American wrestler who, for the past year, trained at one of the top kickboxing schools in the country. He was certainly the favorite going into this fight.

Cornering both Pat Schultz and Dollaway this day, we staggered the warm-ups to make sure both guys were warm and ready to go. I vividly remember helping CB get ready. He did some sprints and stretches on his own, and then he and I drilled positions, one of which was stopping the takedown. Each time I shot in, CB would hit me with his hips so hard I would have rather been punched straight in the face with my hands behind my back. Seriously.

Klein, being a ground guy, was going to have serious trouble getting Dollaway to the ground, leaving CB to dictate the place of the fight.

And what makes MMA so exciting is that ten seconds into the fight, Nick takes CB down and turns this into a real fight, a really good fight.

After a back and forth battle, Dollaway was able to stay a few paces ahead of Klein and finally latched on one of his signature chokes, moving him into the quarterfinal round.

Speaking of the quarterfinals, if you though the last eight fights were pretty good, the next few weeks are amazing!

Unfortunately, I’m going to have to cut this a little short today.

You see, I am sitting about 8,000 feet above sea level right now in Big Bear with Quinton “Rampage” Jackson and the rest of his team, helping him prepare to defend his undisputed world light-heavyweight title on July 5th against none other than Forrest Griffin, and there is much work to be done.


Mike Dolce is a cast member of Spike TV’s “The Ultimate Fighter 7”. He is also a strength coach, sports nutritionist and author of “The DOLCE Diet: Living Lean.” For more information go to his website www.MikeDolceMMA.com

This entry was posted on Thursday, May 22nd, 2008 at 10:34 am by lvollmer. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
Category: Mike Dolce, The Ultimate Fighter 7, UFC




About this blog
Web programmer by day, practicing mixed martial artist at night, Larry Vollmer Jr. brings the latest news from the Ultimate Fighting Championship and the rest of the mixed martial arts world - a fast-spreading obsession on TV and online. These are the bouts - they occur in an octagon-shaped "ring" - that test men's souls.