Matt Mitrione's Ultimate Fighter Blog: Fighting Just Lets Me Be Alive

Matt Mitrione's Ultimate Fighter Blog: Fighting Just Lets Me Be Alive



Following each episode of The Ultimate Fighter Heavyweights, Team Rashad member Matt Mitrione will share his thoughts on what happened on camera and behind the scenes.

The note was gamesmanship. I was trying to get into people’s heads. I had nothing but time to think so I may have over thought that one but I knew what I was going for and what I was intending on happening. Now, Wessel – Wessel was the one who wanted the fight changed. I was supposed to fight Marcus all along but Wessel said he fights better against big guys so I said I’ll fight Junk, great. Wessel was distracted and didn’t want to be in the house. His wife was really sick and he wasn’t allowed to talk to her so he was mentally out of it. Before the fight he didn’t want to train, didn’t want to spar. So I told Rashad that I didn’t want to fight after him and Rashad said he understood that completely, that he wouldn’t want to follow him either.

Then the orange juice – by this time nobody liked Madsen. They’d laugh about him pitching a fit about drinking from his family-sized orange juice. John Madsen and I started off sparring together and that’s when the coaches said 60%. Then I went through another six rounds – I think one round with Keith Jardine and two with Nate Marquardt – and then came back to Madsen. I was sloppy and gassed and he still quit.

As far as talking about voices in my head it was kind of a joke. Nobody here likes me so let’s see what I can do to freak out the camera people. I was going stir crazy. I had no other friends in the house at the time except for Darrill and I couldn’t really tell Darrill what I was doing at the time. It was my own personal joke. It was a way to keep myself entertained. I have a really active mind and I can’t sit around and stare at the other people in a house. I gotta stimulate myself. When I was in the cage and I told T and Rashad that I had a conversation with my wife in my head I was trying so hard not to laugh as I said it.

When the fight started I didn’t pace myself. I was so pissed at Junk for throwing me under the bus that all I wanted to do was punch him in the face. Get back up, get back up so I can punch you in the face again. I knocked him out the first time I caught his kick. He was knocked out. His head hit the ground and the ground woke him back up. Then I started to gas. I didn’t know that that level of tired existed. You see people get that way but I’ve never been there on my own. It was a real big learning experience for me. But now I know how to prepare my body for that.I felt like the only time he could touch me was when I got really, really gassed. I could have ended that fight in 30 seconds if I had any confidence in my ground game but I learned a lot. I dug deep and did what I thought I had to do to win. Scott Junk is tough. I put hands on him for the first three, four minutes and the fact that he came back and kept getting up says a lot.

I’m not crazy, fighting doesn’t make the voices in my head dissipate. It just lets me not have to think for a little while, it just lets me be alive. That’s the best thing about being a defensive end. You don’t think, you just react. You think too much you slow down, so just go out there and let it fly. Maybe now people will start to see that maybe I am legit and maybe there is a method to my madness.


  1. Matt, you are so full of crap. You’re out of shape, undisciplined and frankly not that good. You’re conditioning is pathetic and had you fought someone with even moderate conditioning you’d have been destroyed. As far as “the joke” about trying to freak out the camera people – that’s a load of garbage also. You’ve been labeled a weirdo for a long time. Your time is up.

  2. Had some fast hands on display on that episode. Can’t take anything way from you or junk about your willingness to fight. Obviously you’ve got potential. But you rushed through your Old School quote, pace yourself and it will come. 😀

  3. Mirth – I like your point. Well said! It was hard to hear everyone talk about me being scared to fight when thats obviously not the case but I’m sure they’ll have some interesting version of drama to create!

    Evander – You’re entitled to your opinion and I respect it. I don’t think you’re right, but maybe you are. With that being said, This was pretty much my first fight that lasted more than a minute and I just didnt pace correctly. As far as my sanity…Well, thats always been up for debate. Hope someday I can perform to the standards that you set for a successful fighter. Thanks for the inspiration. Keep it up!

  4. I guess it is kind of hard to be insane and the CEO of your own company. This is hilarious stuff. Keep entertaining. I don’t think it is just the guys in the house that your mind games are having an effect on.

  5. Just found this blog. I think people seem to forget that MMA is not a team sport. I can assume that Matt’s main goal on the show wasn’t to win a popularity contest among his coaches or peers. It was to win, period. In a situation like that, why not do anything you can to get into everyone’s head. If you read Junks blog, ( he admits the note did just that.
    All that being said, I have been very disappointed with the cardio of every fighter, in every fight so far this year. Atleast with guys like Matt and Shivers, they are new to the sport and are more used to the anerobic, explosive demands of the NFL then the endurance cardio needed in MMA. Not to mention they don’t have the experience to always be calm enough to stop the adrenaline dump that can happen to fighters if they get too worked up.

    If you see this Matt, how much time do you have from when you are informed you made the show, up to the point you actually move in and train? I would hope the UFC would give the fighters ample time to get in good shape before the show. The actual 6 weeks of training on the show isn’t enough to get in top condition, especially when you’re fighting multiple times through the whole thing.

  6. I thought this was the funniest fight of the season, it looked like it was going to be over quick with Matt dropping Junk repeatedly, and Junk crawling over to feebly grab a leg. While I agree with Scott Junk’s claim that if it had gone a third round he probably would have won, if Matt had gone in for the kill after any of those early knockdowns the fight would have been over. I realize that Matt didn’t want to get into the ground game with Junk but after you knock a guy down there is a couple seconds where he can’t do anything and you can finish any fight by running up and loading up on punches to the head. I figured you knew what you were doing by pacing yourself but then when you gassed immediately afterwards it was obvious you really should have seized the opportunity to finish him off. Junk really surprised me that he survived the first round, and he probably should have got the second round judged in his favor except that all those slow-motion punches you were throwing actually scored points. OH well, I guess we all know what you need to work on; cardio and going in for the kill. Also I don’t think that jumping up and down stuff before the fight helps if you’re going to gas before the fight is over. Schoonover did that, too, and he gassed early as well. Obviously you need to loosen up a little, but personally I’d just rest before a fight and expend as little energy before the fight starts as possible. Oh and that megadose of ibuprofen you mentioned you were taking probably didn’t help your cardio either. It’s better than tylenol but those large amounts are rough on the system.

  7. dunbladekilla: According to what fighters on previous seasons of TUF have said, some of them had to get on a plane and go to the house on less than 24hrs notice. In this case Kimbo Slice would have had an advantage since he knew he was going to be on the show before anyone else, since the show was put together based on his participation.

  8. Dunbladekilla –

    “If you see this Matt, how much time do you have from when you are informed you made the show, up to the point you actually move in and train? I would hope the UFC would give the fighters ample time to get in good shape before the show. The actual 6 weeks of training on the show isn’t enough to get in top condition, especially when you’re fighting multiple times through the whole thing.”

    They flew us out to Vegas for interviews in mid April. They told us it would be a while before they knew anything so to train and be fight ready when we showed up. I got the call that told me I was going to be on the show about May 24th and we arrived in Vegas to begin filming May 31st. Most of us were prepared to fight on the show but I think that not having to fight to get on the show was a surprise to most of us.

    Hope that answers your question.

    Hey everyone, thanks for taking the time to read my blog and write questions or comments. I appreciate the interaction.

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