The Surprises & Disappointments of the TUF 21 Finale

jake-ellenberger These were the three biggest surprises and the three biggest disappointments from the TUF 21 Finale. The Surprises Mike Graves — It’s surprising that Graves was an underdog to Vicente Luque, and after grinding him out for three rounds, clearly he shouldn’t have been. Graves isn’t the most talented fighter, but he’s a hard worker and he has good wrestling. He’ll win a few fights in the UFC. Josh Samman — Once again Samman was an underdog and once again he won impressively, this time submitting Caio Magalhaes with a first-round RNC. Samman is a very talented fighter and now that his mind is right again, he can dominate mid-tier opposition at 185lbs. Can he beat the elite, though? We’ll surely find that out soon, as he no doubt earned a step up in competition following his latest stoppage win in the Octagon. Jerrod Sanders — Sanders was destroyed in both of his previous UFC fights, so it wasn’t surprising to see him as an underdog against Russell Doane. But that didn’t stop him from putting on an excellent performance that saw him come away with a decision win. Sanders is a lower-tier bantamweight, but with his wrestling he can beat a few guys at the bottom of the division, for sure. The Disappointments Jake Ellenberger — I’m not sure what happened with Ellenberger’s career. He was doing so well, looking like a title contender, then a knockout loss to Martin Kampmann seemed to change things for him. He just hasn’t been the same fighter since, although he has shown flashes of brilliance at times. After getting brutally knocked out with a head kick by Stephen Thompson, Ellenberger clearly isn’t a top-10 fighter anymore — heck, he may not even be top 15. Dan Miller — Miller was out for over two years and even with the long layoff, he was still a Pick ’em price against Trevor Miller. That was a mistake by the market, as Miller was thoroughly dominated in this fight en route to a decision loss. He’s not 6-7 in the UFC and is almost surely going to retire. Darrell Montague — After getting smashed by Willie Gates, Montague is now 0-3 in the UFC and is likely looking at the cut list after suffering his second stoppage loss in three fights in the UFC. He’s a talented guy, but his chin just isn’t able to handle blows from heavy strikers. He may try to work his way back to the big show by going through Titan FC, or he may go back to Tachi.

Written by Adam Martin.

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